Originally published on Saturday, March 25, 2006
Blimey, who’d have thought it? Bridgestone all over the front row, Ducati first and second and Kawasaki third. Yamaha’s top rider was Valentino Rossi, no surprises there, but the fact he is down in ninth and complaining of an insoluble vibration problem.
Valentino doesn’t use the word chatter. It became worse with the qualifier so he couldn’t take advantage of the potential of the sticky rubber. Valentino refused to blame an early crash in the qualifying session for his problems saying that his second bike is just as good as the number one. There is also a traction issue, but Vale thinks his crew can sort that out overnight.
Maybe the Ducatis aren’t a surprise, they had the top two spots here in 2002 with Capirossi and Bayliss. This time it’s Loris and the team’s new boy Sete Gibernau who says he’s pleasantly surprised and is still ‘fighting himself’ rather than anyone else on the track.
No Hondas on the front row? That’s the first time that’s happened since Misano ’93. Nicky is HRC’s top man in 4th and also Michelin’s top man.
Shinya Nakano’s front row is first for Kawasaki since Sepang 2004.
This is the first time ever that Bridgestone have filled the front row.