Valentino Rossi was far from happy with his qualifying position at the Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix, his worst position since Valencia 2008. His attempt to improve his qualifying position had been hampered by a crash with just a few minutes left in the session, the Fiat Yamaha rider going down at Turn 6, a corner that has caught out a lot of riders so far this weekend.
Speaking to the Italian press after qualifying, Rossi complained about the surface of the track in that corner, saying "if it hadn't have been for that hole in Turn Six ... We asked for that hole to be filled in two years' ago in the Safety Commission." The crash was Rossi's second of the day, something that hadn't happened since his first season back in 1996, Rossi claimed. The cause, Rossi explained, was the rear suspension being set too hard, making it impossible for Rossi to catch the bike once it started to slide.
Despite the crash, Rossi was happier with his preparation for race day, and the support he was getting from Yamaha at the first race since he announced he will be leaving the factory he has been for the past six and a half seasons. "I have everything I need," he said, going on to say that they were still working on a setup, and needed three tenths of a second to be on race pace. But the team had made a big step forward, Rossi added, and he was confident that there was more to come.
At the end of the debrief, Rossi touched upon the surprising make up of the grid, with neither himself, Casey Stoner or Dani Pedrosa on the front row. Speaking of Ben Spies' stunning debut pole at Indy, he complimented the American on his fast lap, then hinted at one of the reasons behind his own decision to leave Yamaha. "I'm happy for Lorenzo because now he has found he has his own "Jorge Lorenzo" in his team to be be a nuisance to him next year!" Rossi commented. And he was probably only half joking.