Italian reflects on Assen top spot and hopes for dry conditions.
Valentino Rossi in the parc fermé after QP in Assen
Valentino Rossi will start from the head of the MotoGP grid for the second time in 2009 for Saturday’s Alice TT Assen, although he regards his Friday result in the timed session as his first ‘real’ pole position of the year.
The Fiat Yamaha rider was previously given the honour of leading the riders off the line at the Japanese round of the MotoGP World Championship in Motegi, courtesy of his free practice times after the rain-hit qualifying run was cancelled. This time his rivals could have no complaints, as he sent them all packing with a 1’36.025 lap.
“I’m so happy about the qualifying session. This morning we worked a lot on the bike and this afternoon we put it all together,” said the joint World Championship leader. “I have a good pace with the race tyres as well, and I’m looking at a few places where we can improve tomorrow. “I’m also happy to have taken pole position, because even though it is always great this one is my second of the year. Motegi was a strange case because of the rain in qualifying, so this is a real pole position with a really good lap at the end.”
Not a fan of flag-to-flag races, Rossi is praying for sunshine at the ‘Cathedral of Motorcycle Racing,’ where he believes that he can challenge for a 100th Grand Prix victory.
“I’m in good shape, just like my M1, and I just hope for good weather tomorrow. To have the grandstands full today for practice sessions is something incredible, so we’ll try to put on a good show for the fans tomorrow.”