After following Scott Redding on his launched lap to set a fastest time of 1m36.892s, MotoGP convert Tito Rabat ran spectacularly wide at Turn 1 over the Barni Ducati with around four minutes remaining, but managed to dodge barriers and to reach the track safely. .
However, the deployed yellow flag led to the cancellation of the best laps of several riders under a new rule introduced in WSBK this year, leading to a reshuffle of the grid after qualifying.
Lowes, who initially qualified on the front row in third on the factory Kawasaki, fell to 10th, while GoEleven rider Ducati Davies fell to a disappointing 16th after setting the sixth fastest time in FP3. Earlier in the day.
To add to their misery, both drivers had to start the races behind Rabat, who secured eighth place on the grid in his second attempt at qualifying in the series.
Although Lowes supported the rule in general, he felt that the yellow flag was not justified as Rabat did not crash into the corner and there was never a risk of hitting the marshals if another motorcycle s ‘had escaped or had fallen.
“In fact, I didn’t think [my laptime] was going to be canceled because there had been no accident, there was no immediate danger on the side of the track, ”said the 30-year-old.
“Tito was far from having trouble. He just got off the track himself after doing his turn, he just got out – didn’t even try to take the turn if you look.
“There was no reason for the yellow flag, it makes him frustrating, but the rule is the rule. Obviously, if someone crashes around the corner and is in danger, that’s a different situation. The rule is correct in terms of if someone is on the ground and there are marshals in the gravel pit you do and you have to respect the turn and slow down.
“In today’s situation, it was not a [justified[ yellow flag anyway, so then to lose the lap [was frustrating]. Nothing happened, Tito left the track.
“You can’t put out a yellow flag and spoil everyone’s qualifying because Tito leaves the track. Otherwise the next race I’m just going to go first with my qualifying tire and run through the gravel at turn 1, take my time to turn around. And you’re in pole position. That’s not why the rule is the rule. “
Chaz Davies, GoEleven team
Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport images
Davies had set the sixth fastest times in FP1 and FP3 and it was only due to a technical problem that he was unable to enter the top 10 in Friday afternoon practice.
The 32-time race winner called on the WSBK to adapt their rules to avoid a repeat of the scenario later in the season.
“We talked about it last week in Aragon,” he explains. “They said these are the rules for this year. One of the biggest changes is that if you pass a yellow flag on any turn, it is canceled.
“So everyone’s instant response was like, ‘Yeah, okay, but what if that happens? [super-soft compound] tire?’ So obviously what if someone does a good trick and runs away on purpose and throws a yellow flag if they go first.
“I’m not saying for a moment that this is what happened, but it is a real possibility. Whether it was intentional or not today is exactly what happened and we are only in the second race.
“We have to find something better to meet the needs of the qualifying tires because we are the only championship that organizes the Qs by the minute.
“It’s something they want to keep. But something’s got to give somewhere. You can’t just ruin someone’s weekend like that unfairly. I’ve been super-penalized by this rule and this. turned my whole weekend upside down.
“It’s a good thing it happened so early this season because now the powers that be can change these things, they have a clear example in front of them. Something has to happen. “