Despite grid position
Marco Melandri heads into the final round of the 2007 MotoGP World Championship hoping that his good race pace during practice can help him to a top result at the Grand Prix of Valencia.
The Gresini Honda rider worked hard with his team to prepare
for the race but unfortunately he wasn't able to significantly improve his best lap time on a qualifying tyre and dropped to tenth place in the shootout for grid positions. Not for the first time this season, Melandri is now hoping for a good start as he aims to fight through the pack.
His team-mate Toni Elias also faces a major challenge as he starts from the fifth row. Toni has struggled for grip over the two days of practice but is still determined to fight for a top result in front of his home fans.
MARCO MELANDRI (10th, 1'32.367):
"We've got a good race pace and we showed that on a long run on used tyres today. Unfortunately the extra grip on a qualifying tyre made the chattering worse and that prevented me from setting a good lap time. I'm disappointed because to start from the fourth row is a big handicap. It's difficult to get the right side of the tyre warmed up at this circuit over the first few laps but I think we can use this to our advantage and cut down the gap to some of the riders at the front. It will be important to get a good start and get past the riders with a slower pace than me as early as possible in the race. The podium is not impossible, it will be a long and demanding race from a physical point of view because it's a tight and twisty track. I feel ready for the final race of the year."
TONI ELIAS (14th, 1'32.790):
"It has been a tough weekend - we are struggling because we don't' have enough traction and the feeling is even worse on a qualifying tyre. We'll keep working with the team to find a solution for tomorrow and we still haven't made a tyre choice for the race, which will be crucial. I just hope we can come up with something that allows me to be consistent over 30 long laps in the race."
"The result in qualifying does not reflect the true potential of our riders here.
Marco has got a good race pace but we didn't manage to match that level of performance on a qualifying tyre. Toni suffered even more but he's still highly motivated to put on a good show at his home race."