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Spanish riders start 1-2 in front of cheering home crowd
An exciting MotoGP qualifying session at the Gran Premio bwin.com de España concluded with Motegi race winner and series leader Jorge Lorenzo on pole in Jerez.

The man of the moment in MotoGP Jorge Lorenzo delighted the home crowd at the Jerez de la Frontera circuit in beautiful conditions on Saturday afternoon, as he repeated his 2008 pole for the Gran Premio bwin.com de España.

In stark contrast to the appalling weather at Motegi a week ago which saw qualifying cancelled, the growing Spanish crowd at the Andalusian track were bathed in some typical Iberian sunshine as the MotoGP riders put on a great show on their 800cc prototypes.

Lorenzo and his big Spanish rival Dani Pedrosa did battle for pole position during the 45 minute session, with the Fiat Yamaha rider eventually emerging on top with a 1’38.933 hot lap on the 18th of his 21 turns of the track.

Saturday morning’s fastest rider Pedrosa again demonstrated his improving form and fitness on his Repsol Honda RC212V machine, lapping just 0.051s behind his young compatriot.

Ducati Marlboro’s Casey Stoner, who won the BMW M Award at Jerez in March’s Official MotoGP Test, was around half a second behind Lorenzo with his best effort putting him third on the grid at one of his least favored tracks.

Friday’s top man, World Champion Valentino Rossi could not match his championship rivals and after a modest Saturday morning free practice outing the Italian qualified off the front row for the first time this year in fourth place.

A good effort from Randy de Puniet saw him as the top satellite equipped qualifier in fifth place for the LCR Honda team, whilst the second line of the grid was rounded off by Rizla Suzuki’s Loris Capirossi - who made sure four different manufacturers are represented on the front two rows.

The third row, meanwhile, features Colin Edwards (Monster Yamaha Tech 3), Andrea Dovizioso (Repsol Honda) and Toni Elias (San Carlo Honda Gresini), who will all be in the hunt for good points on Sunday.

Chris Vermeulen (Rizla Suzuki) was tenth fastest, with Sete Gibernau (Grupo Francisco Hernando) twelfth and 2006 World Champion Nicky Hayden (Ducati Marlboro) down in 16th.

San Carlo Honda Gresini’s Alex de Angelis crashed at the end of the session and qualified in 15th place, but was not reported to be injured.



Rider Time Nat Bike Team
1 Jorge Lorenzo 1m 38.933s SPA YAMAHA Fiat Yamaha Team
2 Dani Pedrosa 1m 38.984s SPA HONDA Repsol Honda Team
3 Casey Stoner 1m 39.415s AUS DUCATI Ducati Marlboro Team
4 Valentino Rossi 1m 39.642s ITA YAMAHA Fiat Yamaha Team
5 Randy De Puniet 1m 39.806s FRA HONDA LCR Honda MotoGP
6 Loris Capirossi 1m 39.862s ITA SUZUKI Rizla Suzuki MotoGP
7 Colin Edwards 1m 39.926s USA YAMAHA Tech 3 Yamaha
8 Andrea Dovizioso 1m 39.966s ITA HONDA Repsol Honda Team
9 Toni Elias 1m 40.112s SPA HONDA San Carlo Honda Gresini
10 Chris Vermeulen 1m 40.185s AUS SUZUKI Rizla Suzuki MotoGP
11 Marco Melandri 1m 40.381s ITA KAWASAKI Hayate Racing Team
12 Sete Gibernau 1m 40.440s SPA DUCATI Grupo Francisco Hernando
13 Yuki Takahashi 1m 40.599s JAP HONDA Scot Racing Team MotoGP
14 James Toseland 1m 40.670s GBR YAMAHA Tech 3 Yamaha
15 Alex De Angelis 1m 40.796s SMR HONDA San Carlo Honda Gresini
16 Nicky Hayden 1m 40.953s USA DUCATI Ducati Marlboro Team
17 Mika Kallio 1m 41.238s FIN DUCATI Pramac Racing
18 Niccolo Canepa 1m 41.253s ITA DUCATI Pramac Racing

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