The two Ducati Team riders, Andrea Dovizioso and Cal Crutchlow, and test-rider Michele Pirro, entered in the Spanish race as a wild-card, struggled more than expected today at the Montmeló circuit, where the first two free practice sessions for the GP of Catalunya were held.
After a difficult first session, both Dovizioso and Crutchlow slightly improved their times in the afternoon: the Italian finished the day in tenth place with a time of 1’42.812, while his British team-mate lapped in 1’43.725 to finish back in fifteenth place.
Michele Pirro was unable to improve in the warmer afternoon conditions, and he ended up in 14th place, with a time slightly quicker than that of Crutchlow.
Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team #04) – 10th (1’42.812)
“I am quite happy because we managed to improve on this morning’s set-up. This afternoon the conditions were more difficult because there was less grip with the hot weather (50° C track), but we got a bit closer to the leaders. I didn’t do a great lap with the soft tyre, because at the front I had fitted a harder used one. But I managed to get into the top 10 and that’s positive.”
Cal Crutchlow (Ducati Team #35) – 15th (1’43.725)
“Obviously today I’m not very happy with the situation, we’ve made hardly any improvement and my Desmosedici GP14 had very little grip. We need to improve tomorrow, but for the moment it’s difficult because we still have the same problem in that we cannot turn the bike the way we want to. I think Dovi is in the same boat, but he is just able to do a faster lap time than me at the moment.”
Michele Pirro (Ducati Test Team #51) – 14th (1’43.624)
“Today we tried various things with my GP14, but in the end I was not able to improve on this morning’s time with the warmer track. Tomorrow we’ll try and work on the set-up and make another step, and I feel sure we can make some progress.”