Tech 3 boss Herve Poncharal believes this weekend’s British Grand Prix represents Cal Crutchlow’s best hope of claiming a first MotoGP victory.
The Briton has already threatened a breakthrough win on a number of occasions this year, notably claiming second at both Le Mans and the Sachsenring. In the latter race, he finished just 1.9 seconds behind Marc Marquez. Crutchlow has also taken his first and second premier class poles this year, including in last weekend’s Czech Grand Prix at Brno.
Poncharal believes that momentum, coupled with the fact Silverstone traditionally plays to Yamaha’s strengths, constitutes the best chance Crutchlow has of claiming victory for Yamaha’s satellite squad.
“If there is a grand prix he can win I think it is here more than anywhere else,” Poncharal said. “And he has the speed, so he can win.
“He has had two poles, and Brno especially was a true pole because both [Jorge] Lorenzo and [Dani] Pedrosa were fit. It won’t be easy because the top three are so good, but I believe there is the possibility to win this race.”
Poncharal played down Crutchlow’s poor record at his home grand prix, saying that moments of costly over-exuberance should not mask his underlying pace.
Crutchlow crashed out of qualifying in 2011 and was unable to compete, while he came through from the back of the grid to finish sixth last year despite riding with a broken ankle.
“While we could see he was quite unlucky or too nervous in the last few years, he was very fast,” Poncharal added. “The track suits Yamaha, and if he can deal with the pressure – which is not easy – yes, he can win.”
Crutchlow was third and then sixth fastest respectively in the opening two practice session’s of this year’s British Grand Prix.