Marc Marquez beats Valentino Rossi to Czech GP pole

Marc Marquez speeds to pole
Marc Marquez speeds to pole

Reigning Champion Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) will have the best seat in the house for the start of the second half of the season, taking a stunning pole position to just edge key title rival Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) in qualifying for the Czech GP. Equally close to the top duo is Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team), who led for the first part of the session before being deposed from provisional pole to P3.

Day 1’s fastest Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) followed up his Friday heroics with another good result in qualifying, gearing up for the Czech GP at the head of the second row in P4. Joining him on Row 2 are Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda) and the second Ducati of Jorge Lorenzo, despite an earlier fast lap being disallowed for the ‘Spartan’.

Maverick Vinales (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) took P7, and will be looking to move forward quickly to get in the battle with his key rivals for the Championship – with the weather another factor to consider for all those on the grid, as Sunday forecasts remain mixed.

[adinserter name="GOOGLE AD"]Danilo Petrucci (Octo Pramac Racing) and Alvaro Bautista (Pull&Bear Aspar Team) both put together solid laps in Q2, after having moved through from the first qualifying session. The Italian – as he was in Q1 – was just ahead, and the two line up in eighth and ninth respectively. Johann Zarco (Monster Yamaha Tech 3), after a slightly more challenging weekend for the French rookie so far, completes the top ten.

Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini) suffered a crash towards the end of Q2 to put paid to his final chances, ending the session in eleventh ahead of Loris Baz (Reale Avintia Racing), who lines up P12 after an impressive performance in FP3 to graduate straight to Q2.

Alex Rins (Team Suzuki Ecstar) just missed out on Q2 by 0.006 and lines up in P13, just ahead of a tough result for Jonas Folger (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) after the German had been second fastest on Friday. Jack Miller (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) locks out the top fifteen.

Valentino Rossi
Valentino Rossi

Now all that remains is to race, with the lights going out for the tenth battle of the year at 14:00 (GMT +2).

Marc Marquez 93 POLE POSITION 1'54.981
“I’m very happy with today because I knew that making the pole would be tough, as I normally struggle at this track, but I tried for it anyway. The test we did here was useful. I felt good already with the first tire, even if I nearly crashed as I was pushing very hard. I tried to ride smoothly but still brake hard. With the second tire, I gave it all I had and we got this pole. I’m very, very happy. Tomorrow we’ll see what weather conditions we have, as it looks a bit unstable and not as warm. It will be a long, hard race but we should be able to fight for the podium in either the dry or the wet, so we’re looking forward to it and to enjoying the race."

Czech Republic – Qualifying

Pos No. Rider Nat Team Bike Time Behind Gap
1 93 Marc MARQUEZ SPA Repsol Honda Team HONDA 1'54.981 0.000 0.000
2 46 Valentino ROSSI ITA Movistar Yamaha MotoGP YAMAHA 1'55.073 0.092 0.092
3 26 Dani PEDROSA SPA Repsol Honda Team HONDA 1'55.119 0.138 0.046
4 4 Andrea DOVIZIOSO ITA Ducati Team DUCATI 1'55.441 0.460 0.322
5 35 Cal CRUTCHLOW GBR LCR Honda HONDA 1'55.489 0.508 0.048
6 99 Jorge LORENZO SPA Ducati Team DUCATI 1'55.552 0.571 0.063
7 25 Maverick VINALES SPA Movistar Yamaha MotoGP YAMAHA 1'55.663 0.682 0.111
8 9 Danilo PETRUCCI ITA OCTO Pramac Racing DUCATI 1'55.738 0.757 0.075
9 19 Alvaro BAUTISTA SPA Pull&Bear Aspar Team DUCATI 1'56.027 1.046 0.289
10 5 Johann ZARCO FRA Monster Yamaha Tech 3 YAMAHA 1'56.075 1.094 0.048
11 41 Aleix ESPARGARO SPA Aprilia Racing Team Gresini APRILIA 1'56.355 1.374 0.280
12 76 Loris BAZ FRA Reale Avintia Racing DUCATI 1'56.624 1.643 0.269
13 42 Alex RINS SPA Team SUZUKI ECSTAR SUZUKI 1'56.460 (*) 0.240
14 94 Jonas FOLGER GER Monster Yamaha Tech 3 YAMAHA 1'56.540 (*) 0.320 0.080
15 43 Jack MILLER AUS EG 0,0 Marc VDS HONDA 1'56.543 (*) 0.323 0.003
16 8 Hector BARBERA SPA Reale Avintia Racing DUCATI 1'56.685 (*) 0.465 0.142
17 17 Karel ABRAHAM CZE Pull&Bear Aspar Team DUCATI 1'56.786 (*) 0.566 0.101
18 44 Pol ESPARGARO SPA Red Bull KTM Factory Racing KTM 1'57.034 (*) 0.814 0.248
19 38 Bradley SMITH GBR Red Bull KTM Factory Racing KTM 1'57.042 (*) 0.822 0.008
20 29 Andrea IANNONE ITA Team SUZUKI ECSTAR SUZUKI 1'57.245 (*) 1.025 0.203
21 53 Tito RABAT SPA EG 0,0 Marc VDS HONDA 1'57.288 (*) 1.068 0.043
22 22 Sam LOWES GBR Aprilia Racing Team Gresini APRILIA 1'57.465 (*) 1.245 0.177
23 45 Scott REDDING GBR OCTO Pramac Racing DUCATI 1'57.517 (*) 1.297 0.052

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