The Petronas SRT driver showed one of the strongest forms this year during the training sessions and time trial, managing to steer the M1 to eighth on the grid on Saturday. However, the cooler conditions he experienced on race day did not play into his hands.
Instead of the normally preferred solid rear tire, he now had to go with the medium, but that wasn’t in his favour. He had a good start, at one point he was sixth, but then he started to fall wildly, eventually running four seconds slower than his best before.
Rossi made it clear that he definitely expected a stronger performance from himself at Silverstone, so it was “very unfortunate” that he didn’t do everything. “I was strong all weekend, felt comfortable on the bike, and the speed was just fine.”
“We knew it was going to be a little tough to start in the middle because we were better with the hardest. Today, it was really cold, so we had to pick medium. So I was expecting some complications, but not too much. I finally did a good job and was in the lead. In the first laps.”
“I was pretty much where I was waiting for myself, where I could fight the others, around seventh, eighth and ninth. After five or six laps, the rear tire dropped amazingly. I didn’t have any grip on the right anymore. It was as if the rubber had burnt out and then performance decreased.
“I started losing seconds on every lap. I tried to get to the finish line, but I was too slow. It’s so unfortunate because of this, I’m really sad because I wanted to get a good result here because I love the track, the atmosphere is great and there are so many fans.”
“Plus, I felt good with the engine, the track was fast, there were technical stages, and I was competitive the whole previous weekend. I wanted to close in the top 10, but it happened.” When Rossi was asked if they could use the solid mixture, he replied: “Unfortunately no. It can’t be used because we can’t generate enough temperature.”
“I know we are a little more difficult with the medium because I was faster with the difficult yesterday, but there was no choice. I had to go with this because the weather was very cold,” concluded the Italian biker.
Perhaps there will be rule changes after the Belgian Grand Prix failure