Andrea Dovizioso has ruled out finishing on the podium in tomorrow's MotoGP race at Donington, despite qualifying on the second row of the grid. The works Honda rider, who was more than sixth tenths behind pole position on his way to fifth spot, reckons his RC212V lacks race pace and traction.
"I'm not angry about [missing] the front row," said the Italian. "I'm angry about my pace, which is much more important for the race.
"Second row is good enough to make a good race. If you start on the third row anything can happen at the first corner of the first lap. Second row is OK but the problem is our pace: not strong enough to be thinking about victory or the podium.
"We need to improve the [turn] entry and the traction here. I was behind [Yamaha's Jorge] Lorenzo and Valentino [Rossi] and I saw a big difference with their entry, but this is our characteristic, we don't have this problem just here.
"I also saw many riders having problems with the traction, it's a characteristic of the track and the tires, but we need to improve it."
In fact, Dovizioso feels he could do well in wet or drying conditions, which is how yesterday's free practice was run, with the former 125cc champion ending up fourth quickest, four tenths behind teammate Dani Pedrosa's fastest time.
"Yesterday in the wet the feeling was really good when there was a lot of water and especially when it was drying," explained Dovizioso. "Starting from the second row will be really important. I don't want to think about the weather because here it's very difficult to understand how it will be. I'm ready to race with the rain tire but we are not unbelievably fast in the dry."
Honda Racing Corporation is working on a new chassis, which should be available for the factory team at either the Brno race or at the following day's test in mid-August.
Dovizioso looks forward to this new development, as he reckons his bike can't be improved only through set-up modifications.
"Honda is working really hard." he said. "I think in Brno it can be [the start of] a new phase. Now we're still working to find the best set up for out package, but I think it's impossible to find a solution with just the set-up: we can only improve a little bit."