“I felt impotent and ashamed”
Repsol Honda rider Dani Pedrosa had a demoralising ride to 15th in Sunday's afternoon's Czech Grand Prix, the Spaniard badly troubled by tyre problems.
Pedrosa, returning from the hand and wrist injuries he sustained during last month's
German GP, struggled throughout the weekend with lack of grip, his Michelin tyres not up to the expected level of performance in practice or today's race.
On Saturday he qualified 12th in a rain-lashed qualifying session. Despite the problems Pedrosa is still third in the World Championship points standings, with six of eighteen rounds remaining.
“This weekend has been a complete disaster. Today's race was probably the worst of my career”, said the Sapniard. “In fact I couldn't even race today, all I could do was ride. I couldn't control the bike, I didn't feel safe. I was riding so slow, I felt impotent and ashamed. I considered stopping but I stayed out there to get some points. We really need a drastic improvement from the tyres. I had no grip at the front and no grip at the rear, from the first lap to the last. It was therefore impossible for me to push any harder, even though I was going very slow, three or four seconds slower than the leader. I almost crashed twice, so I just tried to finish the race. I did my best in very difficult circumstances, at the end the tyre performance was even worse than it had been during the early laps.”
“It is very difficult for me to comment, other than to say that I am very disappointed with this weekend”, added Team Manager Kazuhiko Yamano. “It has been a disaster for us. We tried many different settings solutions to find better tyre performance but it was obvious from the first laps today that Dani was in a very difficult situation with poor grip. In fact I was worried that if he pushed harder he might crash. The team has done its best here but we have been restricted by tyre performance.”
The 2008 MotoGP series continues at Misano in two weeks, when Pedrosa will be rejoined by team-mate Nicky Hayden who missed this race due to a foot injury sustained during an X Games Supermoto event in Los Angeles on August 1.