Qualifying for the Aragon Grand Prix took place on a dry track in chilly, cloudy conditions, and Valentino Rossi and Nicky Hayden finished in eighth and ninth places, respectively, putting them both on the third row of tomorrow’s starting grid.
Rossi had a fall at mid-session and Hayden had one at the end, and although neither incident had any physical repercussions, the session was somewhat affected for both riders. They hope for a dry warm-up session tomorrow morning, to help them refine the Desmosedici’s setup.
Valentino Rossi – 8th (1:50.949)
“This is a pretty difficult track. You spin a lot, and it’s basically the opposite of Misano. Today went pretty well considering that the others tested here recently and that qualifying was basically the first normal session all weekend. Being on the third row isn’t great, but it’s not too bad either. Unfortunately, I fell about midway through the session, and that cost us some time. Tomorrow we’ll have to decide between a couple of setting options. Let’s hope that the warm-up session will be dry so that we’ll have the opportunity to improve the setup a little bit. Then in the race we’ll see what pace we’re actually able to do.”
Nicky Hayden – 9th (1:51.013)
“It wasn’t a great day. It was hard to check much in the wet this morning, and I wanted to save some rain tyres for the afternoon just in case, so we didn’t do a lot of work. In qualifying, at times we weren’t too far off, but then when we put in my last tyre at the end, I lost the front in the middle of the last corner. I picked it up, but I was headed right for the wall. I just touched the brakes, and with slicks on wet grass, that was it. We certainly could have done without that, but luckily it wasn’t a big one. This was the first time I was able to really ride the new chassis in the dry, but I need more setup time with it. We’ll regroup and see what we come up with for tomorrow.”