Crutchlow annoyed by Honda prioritising Pedrosa for parts
Cal Crutchlow has expressed his frustration that Honda is still prioritising the soon-to-retire Dani Pedrosa for new parts as the MotoGP season enters its final stages.
LCR Honda rider Crutchlow was speaking after qualifying fourth for this weekend’s Aragon Grand Prix and crashing out in Q2, costing himself a chance of a front row starting position.
But the Briton was adamant that even Marc Marquez could have not gone any faster on his satellite RC213V, which does not have the carbon swingarm of the works Hondas.
Crutchlow said he was dismayed that Honda chose to give the latest material to Pedrosa, even though the Spanish rider is quitting at the end of the year, while Crutchlow recently signed a fresh extension to his HRC contract.
“I have to worry about Dani [in the race],” he said. “Honda is supporting Dani more this weekend. It seems they gave him the parts before they gave them to me.
“It’s their choice. They gave him the thing, because… they have to think of their teams’ championship. But maybe they are worried about the threat I will become if I have the part.”
Asked whether he felt he could have come any higher than fourth in qualifying, he replied: “There’s not more in our package, I can tell you that. Lucio [Cecchinello, team boss] is not pissed off [with me] at all.
“He’s pissed off at the situation, that the other rider has got the parts this weekend and I haven’t. We deserve them, we’ve been doing a great job every weekend.
“I think if you put Marc on my bike he would have done the same laptime as me. I think at the moment I am riding very well, but I think the difference is the parts they’ve got now.
“Some racetracks it’s not such a big difference, but when it’s hot like it is here or Misano, that’s the difference. At Silverstone I was faster all weekend.”
Pedrosa confirmed he had been given the new swingarm at Misano, where he finished sixth, but that he has no new parts at Aragon in particular.
The Spaniard qualified sixth on Saturday, a little under a tenth slower than Crutchlow.
Explaining his Q3 crash at the Turn 12 left-hander in Q2, Crutchlow said he had been caught out by Yamaha rider Maverick Vinales going slowly on that part of the track.
“I was a little bit unsighted, because as I came over that hill, Vinales was in the middle of the track,” recalled Crutchlow.
“As I came over the hill, Dani was close, then all I saw was a blue bike. So I laid the bike over fast, to try to tip in early, because I didn’t know what was going on, and then I lost the front."
On his race prospects, he added: “I don’t have the pace of the Ducatis, that’s for sure, but I can get better I think. Marc doesn’t have the pace of the Ducatis either, I don’t think.”
Additional reporting by Oriol Puigdemont
Cal Crutchlow, Team LCR Honda
Photo by: Gold and Goose / LAT Images
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