Jorge Lorenzo: I have less to lose on Sunday
Aragon poleman Jorge Lorenzo says he has “less to lose” in Sunday's race compared to Ducati teammate Andrea Dovizioso, after slipping 24 points adrift in the standings with his Misano crash.
Lorenzo beat Dovizioso to pole at Aragon by just 0.014s, marking his third-straight Saturday success and his fourth of the season.
While still mathematically in the title hunt with Honda's Marc Marquez – who will start third on Sunday – Lorenzo is focused on beating Dovizioso to second in the standings, though admits his crash at Misano has made this “complicated”.
Lorenzo believes the “pressure” on Dovizioso to keep his 24-point advantage in tact, as well as on Marquez to maintain his championship lead leaves him with “less to lose”.
“Of the three [on the front row], I think I am the one with less to lose, especially after my mistake in Misano, the crash,” said Lorenzo.
“Obviously I'm going to try to fight for the second place [in the standings], but after the crash, it gets very complicated having 24 points from Dovi.
“So I think Dovi has this pressure of not making mistakes tomorrow, Marc has the pressure of the championship. So I'm gonna try to fight for the win.”
Speaking about his third-successive pole, Lorenzo admits the “very equal” laptimes being set made Aragon qualifying “not simple”, while traffic made it hard to “remain concentrated”.
“I'm very happy. It was was not simple, because was very close, not as in Misano, because the laptimes were very equal and to have so many riders in front waiting for some [tow] was difficult to remain concentrated and push on the last lap.
“But luckily this group that I have in front of me finally push, so I have free way, I could try to improve a little bit the laptime from before and for just a little bit I get this pole.”
Lorenzo spent his time in FP4 - which he topped with a 1:48.129s - evaluating his preferred soft front option tyre, despite sweltering temperatures expected for the race.
Keen to use the same tyre for the Misano race, he was forced into running the medium front tyre, which he ultimately blamed on his penultimate-lap crash. While undecided if he will run it, Lorenzo admits he is leaning towards it being his race option.
“I think so, it's not decided yet the decision to use the soft front tyre,” he added.
“But it looks like I'm the only one on the Ducati who can use this tyre, I won Mugello, Montmelo with this tyre. So for the moment it looks okay for my riding.”