Ryder Notes: John Brown
by julian ryder, on the ground in spain
Saturday, September 29, 2012

Finally, a dry session. This morning was wet but afternoon qualifying was dry, yet the track was colder than Friday afternoon when it was properly wet. Cue a few crashes, starting with Dani Pedrosa giving himself a painful 27th birthday present, and then Valentino Rossi asking too much of the right side of his front tyre on its first flying lap. Nicky Hayden also crashed late in the session when he lost the front, saved it and found himself heading for the fence. So we don't really know if the new chassis that worked at Misano can do as well at Aragon. We'll have to watch and see if Vale's lap times stay as constant as they did two weeks ago.

We don't really know which of the tires will be used tomorrow, although if the temperature goes up as expected the harder option would seem to be the favorite with most of the fast guys.

And how good to see the ever-impressive Jonathan Rea qualify seventh only a second off pole and ahead of all the Ducatis and Alvaro Bautista. Impressive on and off the track.

I cannot close without mentioning the passing of John Brown. GP correspondent in the golden era of Hailwood and Sheene, generous friend and adviser to aspiring journos, and a wonderful story teller.

Steve Parrish hit exactly the right note; He reckons the conversation is going like this:

John Brown: "Now then ace!"
Barry Sheene: "JB, this is strictly off the record..."


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