Ducati Marlboro Team riders Loris Capirossi and Casey Stoner will start tomorrow's Japanese Grand Prix from the third row of the grid after running eighth and ninth fastest during this afternoon's qualifying session.
World Championship leader Stoner scored
better in free practice, using race tyres, the Australian ending the first three sessions in fourth place. During qualifying his set-up didn't work so well, but he is confident of making detail adjustments during warm-up so that he can have a strong race.
Capirossi, winner here in 2005 and 2006, has moved forward during the weekend and is confident of a decent race tomorrow.
LORIS CAPIROSSI, 8th fastest, 1m 47.047s
"I have to give credit to my team - they have been very reactive this weekend and even if we are struggling again, as usual with the power delivery which doesn't seem to suit my riding style, we've made a few small steps forward. We've tried a lot of small changes and finally we found a race pace with which I am satisfied. Of course, my rhythm isn't the fastest but it's not so bad, around the low 48s. I think it is the rhythm for a reasonable race tomorrow."
CASEY STONER, 9th fastest, 1m 47.121s
"Today we couldn't get a good feeling with the bike, no matter what we did.
I was frustrated because I think we could have improved my time with my second qualifying run but the change we'd made to the setting made braking difficult, so when I came into the last chicane the bike wouldn't go back a gear, so I destroyed the last corner and lost more than half a second. The tyres weren't so bad and to be honest the setting we had this morning was quite good, but as soon as we started the afternoon session that setting didn't seem to work, so we struggled to find a solution. We know we have to improve a little bit more and I think we will try another direction during warm-up. If we can improve a bit in the morning, starting from the third row shouldn't be a big problem. Normally we get goods start and with a few passes we can get to the front."