Press releases from the MotoGP teams after qualifying at Barcelona:
HISTORIC 1-2 FOR SUZUKI IN CATALUNYA QUALIFYING
Team Suzuki Press Office – June 13.
Team SUZUKI ECSTAR grabbed a historic result today during qualifying for the Grand Prix of Catalunya as they took first-and second places on the grid for tomorrow’s race with riders Aleix Espargaro and Maverick Viñales.
Suzuki hasn’t been in pole position since 2007, when Chris Vermeulen took the top-slot at Assen and hasn’t had a one-two on the grid since Jerez in 1993, when Kevin Schwantz and Alex Barros achieved this feat at the Spanish Grand Prix.
The morning’s free practice saw both Suzuki riders consistently amongst the top positions again, with Viñales eventually topping the combined classification. The job done by the Suzuki development team in Japan seems to have paid back dividends, delivering an effective machine for Catalunya’s challenging curves. Overall, both riders have felt confident and have improved their lap-times at every session over the weekend, while also having a very positive race-pace.
Davide Brivio – Team Manager:
“Even if it’s only Saturday, for us this is almost a historic result; it’s only our seventh race and we have our riders in first-and-second-place after qualifying. I couldn’t even imagine such a positive result but it is well deserved. This comes from the huge job done by the riders who are putting a lot of effort in, but also from the contribution of our development team in Japan which is continuously working on improving the machine. In addition, it’s the work of the team here at the track, from whom we’ve asked so much, with many hours and long nights working and we will continue asking for hard work from them as the season goes on. It’s only a qualifying session but is very important for us because it’s a little prize for everyone as it helps team morale and pushes us to do better and better. Tomorrow the race will be another story, but I believe our pace is not bad and the objective will be to stay as close as we can to the top group in the race. We hope that tomorrow will be another step forward in our performance and now I’m curious to see how it will go.”
“I’m very happy because making the Pole Position here in front of our own people is spectacular. It’s also good for Suzuki as they are working very hard and are consistently improving and supporting us, so to have two riders at the front of the grid is very rewarding. Once again we must keep in mind that it’s only Saturday and things are much-more important tomorrow. We need to stay with the front riders and to fight for the podium would be a dream, so we’ll see if we are capable of it. We have a good pace; in FP4 I ran many laps with a used hard tyre and my feeling with it was good.”
“It was amazing: We did a really great job both in the first free practice sessions and now in qualifying. Being on the front row means that our work is going smoothly and also that Suzuki is doing a good job. Today was perfect; this morning I was first and then in the second session, well honestly, I believed also that the Pole was possible for me but finally Aleix was faster by such a small amount, but I know this is also a very special event for him too, so I must be happy to be right behind him. I’m quite confident for tomorrow, my pace is pretty good; and I believe we can do a great race. Of course I will do my best to fight with the front riders and hopefully I will have many chances to make overtakes and enjoy a satisfying race with my GSX-RR.”
Lorenzo Charges to Third in Catalunya Qualifying
This afternoon Movistar Yamaha MotoGP rider Jorge Lorenzo claimed third place on the grid for tomorrow‘s GP Monster Energy de Catalunya following a thrilling qualifying session that saw teammate Valentino Rossi take seventh.
Montmeló (Spain), 13th June 2015
Movistar Yamaha MotoGP‘s Jorge Lorenzo delighted his home fans at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya this afternoon by claiming a front row start for tomorrow‘s GP Monster Energy de Catalunya, taking third on the grid.
With all twelve riders in Q2 within a second of each other, teammate Valentino Rossi pushed hard and made his move at the last moment. He will start tomorrow‘s race from seventh position, two rows behind his teammate.
Eager to impress his home crowd, Lorenzo was the first to leave pit lane for the 15 minute qualifying heat. When he hit the track he shot straight to the top of the time sheets with his first flying lap of 1‘41.008 and immediately returned to the pits for his first stop.
With nine minutes left on the clock he came out on his second bike, ready for another time attack. Having been pushed down to third, the local hero fought back with a perfect 1‘40.646 lap for provisional pole position.
With a little less than four minutes on the clock he quickly headed back to the box to switch back to his first bike for a final push. Having dropped two places in the mean time, he gave it his all, but was unable to improve his time and remained third, 0.100s from pole.
On a one-stop strategy, teammate Rossi left his attack to the very end of the qualifying session. Riding in the midst of the twelve riders on track, the nine-time World Champion found some clear track space. His first flying lap moved him to seventh, but he fell back two places as all the riders clocked their times.
Rossi pushed hard on his second flying lap with a 1‘41.257, temporarily reclaiming seventh spot before making his way back to pit lane for a fresh set of tyres with less than seven minutes of the session remaining.
Two minutes later he headed out on his second stint. Unable to improve with his third flying lap, he picked up the pace in a last effort to better his starting position. The flag signaling the end of the session had already come out when Rossi was on a final clear run, delivering a 1'41.058. This moved him up from ninth to seventh, 0.512s from pole, to take the first slot on the third starting row.
We couldn‘t get the pole position today, by just a little. We had three tyres saved for qualifying but unfortunately on my last try I made a mistake in turn three, I went too fast and a bit wide. In this corner, when you arrive wide you get a bounce and the bike becomes unstable. I had to put the bike up straight a little bit and lost three-tenths there. It was a pity, because it was a good lap on the rest of the track, but I‘m very happy about my lap, because with this bike it‘s not easy to ride a 1‘40,6 in a single hot lap. We finish in front of our main competitors, who are always very quick in the one-lap shoot out. I‘m very happy to be on the first row, for tomorrow that‘s the important thing, and I think we have a good pace for the race. This morning I rode 1‘41.1s for ten laps, but tomorrow at two o‘clock it will be more difficult to be on this pace. I hope to have a similar, or just a little bit slower, pace as I had this morning.
I‘m quite satisfied with the set-up and the turn of events of today. Yesterday we found a good balance for the last exit and we have a good setting, so I feel confident with the bike and today was not so bad. I have a good pace with a used tyre and for tomorrow that will be very important. I expect we will have to make some improvement for tomorrow, we have some work to do in the warm up and apply some small modifications. For the race, as always it will be important to make a good start and stay within the top positions in the first laps. After that I will try to understand the pace for the second half of the race when the tyres start to slide a bit.
In general it has been a positive day for us. Jorge will start from the first row and is the first rider with a medium tyre. He has been fast and consisted in all the sessions, which is a really good sign for us. Vale has improved a lot compared to yesterday and feels well on the bike. He'll start from the third row, but we know what he‘s capable of. We will work throughout the night to go over the information and data that we collected today. We will make some last minor adjustments for the warm up, but we are up for the challenge tomorrow. The race is going to be long and tough but so far we have done a good job and this gives us a boost in confidence.
Andrea Dovizioso goes fifth quickest in GP of Catalunya qualifying to clinch a row 2 start at Montmelò, while Andrea Iannone lines up in twelfth
The two Ducati Team riders – Andrea Dovizioso and Andrea Iannone – concluded today’s qualifying session for the GP of Catalunya, round 7 of the MotoGP World Championship, in fifth and twelfth place. As a result they will line up for Sunday’s 25-lap race at the Montmelò circuit on the outskirts of Barcelona on rows 2 and 4.
Dovizioso recorded fourth-quickest time in FP3 in the morning, which grants access to Q2, thus moving directly into the session. Iannone, who has been having a bit more difficulty in setting up his bike, concluded the combined free practice runs in twelfth place and was forced to take part in Q1.
During the early afternoon’s final FP4 run, Iannone managed to improve his pace to conclude the session in first place, and immediately after he took part in Q1 where he finished second behind Pedrosa.
On his second exit with soft tyres in the decisive Q2 session, Dovizioso went fifth quickest in 1’40.907, while Iannone was unable to make the best of his second soft tyre due to an error that slowed him on his quick lap, and as a result he finished qualifying in twelfth place, which guaranteed him a row 4 start in tomorrow’s GP of Catalunya.
Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team #04) – 1’40.907 (5th)
“We have to be pleased with the qualifying result and the time we set. It’s true we start from row 2, but my time is not bad at all. We’re still missing something in the set-up and the conditions are not the same as in the other races, but we are all close together and with some small improvements we can get closer to the frontrunners, seeing as the track conditions in the afternoon help to mix up the cards a bit. We have worked well and now we have to concentrate on the fine-tuning so we can make a further step forward for the race."
Andrea Iannone (Ducati Team #29) – 1’41.524 (12th)
“Today during qualifying I did not get the best out of my bike’s potential and was unable to obtain the result I had expected. During my second run with a soft tyre, I made a mistake while I was improving my time and this prevented me from getting a better result. I am disappointed about having to start from so far behind, but I’m still positive about tomorrow because I feel that with a good start I can do a good race. My race pace does not seem to be bad and today in FP4 I went quite well, so I am pretty confident. Now we have to focus on the details so as to be ready for tomorrow’s race, where it will be important to start well.”
Second row start for Marquez and Pedrosa in Catalunya GP after tight Qualifying session
It’s been another tough qualifying day for the Repsol Honda team in Catalunya after Dani Pedrosa was narrowly squeezed out of the top ten in FP3, therefore forcing him to take part in Q1. Dani secured his place in Q2 with ease after recording a lap time of 1’41.188, half a second faster than second place Iannone, and was promoted to the final qualifying shootout.
Both riders exited the pits immediately in Q2 with Marc taking provisional pole. On their second exits other riders posted hot laps and demoted Marc from the top as the battle for pole position intensified. Finally, with only 0.382 seconds separating the top six riders, Marc took 4th place with 1’40.754 (lap 7/7) and Dani 6th with 1’40.928 (lap 6/7).
4th 1'40.754 [lap 7/7]
"Today went fairly well. To be honest, the objective was to get onto the front row; it's a shame that in the end it eluded us, but Aleix and Maverick were very fast. For tomorrow's race, I think that Jorge has the best pace, although we shouldn't forget about Valentino and also Dani. They are all dangerous, but we will try to give 100% in front of the home fans in order to be as close as possible to them. We'll see if we can keep with them when we get to the end of the race."
6th 1'40.928 [lap 6/7]
"It was a difficult qualifying session because at this track in particular the soft tyre peaks on the first lap and then drops down. We had to go through Q1, because this morning we had a problem and couldn't go directly into Q2 after I made a small mistake on my final run in FP3. As has been typical recently, the times are very tight, so we will be starting from sixth for the race but we will continue working tomorrow morning in order to try and improve further."
MOTOGP QUALIFIERS AT BARCELONA
SEVENTH AND EIGHTH ROW FOR BAUTISTA AND MELANDRI
Barcelona (Spain), 13 June 2015 – Alvaro Bautista finished the sessions that will determine the starting grid order riding his Aprilia RS-GP to the 10th best time in QP1 (in 1’42,600) which earns him the 20th overall place and therefore the seventh row on the starting grid tomorrow at the Montmelò circuit. Marco Melandri will start from the 24th spot that he earned with the 14th best time (1’44,345) he put on the sheets during the qualifying session.
After the midweek tests conducted at Misano and in the spirit of the 2015 season-long test, Aprilia Racing Team Gresini brought various set up and chassis changes to Barcelona which led to some improvements, especially for Bautista who put in a nice time in the penultimate free practice session (FP3) before the qualifiers.
Now, in view of tomorrow's race, the Sunday morning warm up session will be used to continue looking for better solutions, especially to increase grip on a worn tyre.
ROMANO ALBESIANO (Aprilia Racing Manager)
“With a new tyre we are performing fairly well. The problem we need to solve is that this performance drops as the tyre wears. Naturally we'll be taking advantage of the warm up session tomorrow down to the last minute looking for more traction with a worn tyre. We can't be afraid of revolutionising the entire package for the sake of testing every possible solution.”
FAUSTO GRESINI (Team Manager)
“As usual, today Alvaro really gave it his all, but I don't think it will be an easy race tomorrow. After a few laps the bike starts to slide and we lose traction. So tomorrow we'll try some more solutions to improve the situation.”
“Today we improved our pace a bit compared to yesterday but I'm still lacking grip at the rear. In FP4 I went out on used tyres specifically to try and see how the bike would perform in this situation. With the new tyre in the qualifiers I lapped faster but the race will be more difficult because this track really eats up the tyres and this is a situation that my bike does not like much.”
“To be honest I expected to take a bigger step forward. We worked well but we still haven't solved the usual chassis problem. Tomorrow we'll try a different setting to aim for a decent race.”
Yonny once again directly qualified to Q2. Petrux will start 16°.
Yonny Hernandez never misses a shot and following a great performance in FP3 he managed once again to qualify directly to Q2. Danilo Petrucci's week end looks to be not so easy: the rider from Terni will start from the sixth row but he seems to have made a step forward compared to the difficulty shown on Friday. These are the results of the first two days at the Montmel circuit in Barcelona, where the Grand Prix de Catalunya will be held tomorrow.
A race that Yonny Hernandez will start from the tenth position with much confidence. The rider from Medellin started very well his Saturday lapping strong in FP3 to gain direct qualification to Q2 once again. In the Q2 Yonny could run even faster in the afternoon lowering of more than 3 tenths of a second his laptime and finishing in tenth place with a time of 1'41.333 (7 tenths of a second behind Aleix Espargaro's pole position).
Danilo Petrucci fought with courage and confirmed the postive feelings on the race pace already highlighted on Friday, lapping constant in FP4 and setting the thirteenth quickest time of 1'42.902, just 8 cents of a second from his teammate Yonny Hernandez. In qualifying, however, Petrux failed to make that step in terms of speed that he would need to get a better position on the grid. The laptime of 1'42.155 recorded in Q1 earned him sixteenth position in the starting grid.
10° - Yonny Hernandez - OCTO Pramac Racing Team #68
I am very happy as we managed to stay in the Top 10. It has been a very positive weekend so far, probably the best of the season after the one in Qatar. The feeling is really good. I feel I have so much confidence, even in race pace. So I hope we can do well tomorrow, especially to stay with the front group from the beginning of the race to fight for a good position.
16° - Danilo Petrucci - #OCTO Pramac Racing Team #9
Yesterday was very difficult. Today the feeling was better. We are a little closer to the others but it is still very tough. TV showed the moment when I lost the front. This has already happened over the weekend confirming that the feelings shared yesterday with the team were the right ones. I have a good race pace but the position in the grid is not very easy. And I haven't manage to make good starts so far. It will be tough but I have confidence and I want to go out to take points for the standing waiting for Assen, a track I really like. Tomorrow I will start from behind, there will bagarre but there will be also fun”.
Fifth row for Redding in Montmeló
Montmeló, Spain - 13 June 2015: Scott Redding will start tomorrow's Catalan Grand Prix from 14th on the grid, after finishing fourth fastest in a closely contested QP1 session this afternoon.
While Redding has struggled in the early part of the season there have been signs of progress this weekend in Montmeló. In the all-important final free practice, where riders undertake longer runs to assess their pace and rhythm for the race, the 22-year-old Briton was seventh fastest and his times were a solid indication of his potential for tomorrow's 25-lap race.
During FP4 the Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS rider felt that the team had made progress with the used tyre but, ultimately, despite making an improvement with his settings in qualifying he was still unable to challenge for the top two places.
Starting behind the Ducatis of Andrea Iannone and Hector Barbera means Redding will need to be strong in the opening laps, as he looks for a first top ten finish since the Grand Prix of Argentina.
Scott Redding: 14th - 1’42.029
"We lost out on QP2 in FP3 because I got held up on my fast lap. We knew going into QP1 that when the other guys used their soft tyre, and also having Dani looking for a place in QP2, that it would be very difficult to make it through the session. In FP4 with the used tyre it felt pretty good and even in qualifying we made some improvements but unfortunately it wasn't enough to make it through. At the end of the day we have to start where we're going to start from tomorrow and then it's the same as every weekend; try and make the time back in the race."
Michael Bartholemy: Team Principal
"Yesterday I really thought that we could make it into QP2 but it was very difficult today because there were two very fast candidates in front of us with Pedrosa and Iannone. However, having Barbera in front of us on the grid means this wasn't the best performance for us. In qualifying we did a slower lap than yesterday and when that happens it's impossible to go into QP2. It's difficult to say what to expect tomorrow because it depends on who Scott gets stuck behind in the race. If it's the Ducatis then they will be difficult to overtake once again, because they demand a different riding style, but if we can get past them I think that maybe we can finish inside the top ten."
Sixth Open Class "pole position" for Barbera and Avintia Racing
13/06/15 Avintia Racing MotoGP Grand Prix of Catalunya QP
The great work made by the Avintia Racing team from the first free practice yesterday it has paid off in today’s qualifying with Hector Barbera 13th fastest and his sixth Open Class “pole position” in seven races so far. The Spanish rider pace for the 25 laps race is good and he’s looking forward to have a good race in his team’s home Grand Prix. But the most important is that his arm pump problems have completely disappeared just 12 days after the successful surgery.
Mike Di Meglio also finished very happy today in Montmeló after his best qualifying position of the season so far. The Avintia Racing French rider was the 17th fastest today and will start the race tomorrow form the sixth row of the grid so he’s confident to score his firsts points of the year in Barcelona.
HECTOR BARBERA #8 / 13th (1st Open) 1'42.003 @HectorBarbera
I’m happy, but not because we were the best Open Class bike, I’m happy because we have made a great job during the weekend. I think my pace is good for the race and we are ready. We’ll have to wait and see how is the temperature and how will be the race tomorrow, but right now I don’t want to say anything. I know that everything is in the right place, so we’ll see tomorrow. We have to be clever and think about our position in the Championship because maybe Bradl will be our toughest rival tomorrow, but he only has one point on the standings, so we wont risk a crash and loose our advantage.
MIKE DI MEGLIO #63 / 17th (3rd Open) 1'42.275 @Mikejpp63
We made a pretty good qualifying. The bike is really, really good to make one fast lap but I need more experience to get those last few tenths. But I’m 0.2s behind Hector and every time I got on the bike I’ve improved one second, and I also have good pace for the race. We’ll see tomorrow, but I’m more confident and more motivated than ever, we have made a good job for the race and I think that tomorrow is possible to get a good result for the team at their home Grand Prix.
UPBEAT CRUTCHLOW GETS THIRD ROW START IN CATALUNYA
Cal Crutchlow will start Sunday’s Grand Prix of Catalunya from the third row of the grid, despite a late qualifying crash when he looked set for a possible front row position.
The CWM LCR Honda Team rider has made steady progress this weekend, despite being hampered by the right ankle dislocation he suffered at the last race in Italy.
He was particularly upbeat about his chances of picking up positions in Sunday’s race, believing that ninth place on the grid doesn’t accurately reflect his true position in the field. This was proven when he had crossed the first three sectors in record time during the 15-minute qualifying session. He then unfortunately lost the front at the tight turn ten, but thankfully emerged unscathed and still positive about the race ahead.
Cal Crutchlow #35 – 9th (1’41.195)
“I think we’re set up well for the race, and I’m actually pleased with how the day went. We may be ninth on the grid but I think it’s clear for everybody to see that the Honda riders are struggling in these conditions more than in other years. The factory I know are working really hard for us back in Japan to make things better.”
“I know I made a mistake at the end, but I had warned my team that I was going to push as hard as I could to get onto the front row for the first time this year! I pushed, and sadly that was the end result. “
“Overall I’m happy with my speed and my race pace, rather than my overall fastest lap. Ninth isn’t where we are in reality.”
Bradl second Open bike in Montmeló qualifying
The riders of the Athinà Forward Racing team will start tomorrow from 15th and 19th place on the grid aiming to win the Open class once again.
Stefan Bradl and Loris Baz, in fact, ended the qualifying session today with a personal best of 1.42.053 and 1.42.592 stopping just half a tenth short of the head of the Open.
The German, who has battled throughout the round with Barbera, who is the author of the pole of the category a few seconds before the checkered flag, will start in fifth row. His goal is to collect important points for the championship.
Loris Baz was held back by chattering problems and will start from the the seventh row. The Frenchman is targeting again the Top15 for tomorrow.
"I am pleased with what has been done today. We managed to make a good step forward compared to yesterday and I fought until the end for Open class pole. I'm positive for tomorrow: I was lapping alone for most of the time in qualifying and this is a great starting point for the race. Our target is to finally reach the checkered flag and get some points"
Loris Baz"So far we have done a good job but in qualifying I suffered a lot for tires chattering and I was not able to push hard. We have to analyze the data and find a solution for the warm-up to improve the pace for the race".
Smith to challenge Catalunya contest from 8th on the grid
Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team rider Bradley Smith will start the Gran Premi Monster Energy de Catalunya from the third row on the grid after speeding to 8th place in this afternoon’s qualifying practice 2. The 24 year old rider began the day by finishing the morning FP3 session in 10th place which enabled him to progress straight through to the final 15 minute shootout. Here, Smith dropped the hammer straight away and after undertaking a total of 7 laps around the Catalunya circuit, he met the chequered flag with a strong time of 1’41.068. This time was only half a second back from the pole position lap plus, the British rider set the fastest Yamaha speed with 339.9 km/h. Tomorrow he will look to launch off the grid and battle right behind the leading factory MotoGP bikes aboard his Yamaha YZR-M1.
On the other side of the Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team pit box, Pol Espargaro will begin his home Grand Prix from 11th on the grid after a tightly contested qualifying battle at Catalunya in which the top 16 riders were covered by a second. The young Spaniard commenced the day with a notable ride to 5th in the morning practice and when the all important qualifying session began in the afternoon, he leapt into action as he gunned for a top starting position in front of his home crowd. On his 6th lap he posted a time of 1’41.385 he attempted to improve further on the next lap, yet he unfortunately fell at the first corner. Nevertheless, Espargaro’s time was three tenths of a second quicker than his qualifying time from last year and when the lights go out tomorrow he will intend to climb through the pack to join the battle for the leading satellite bike position.
Postion : 8th Time : 1'41.068 Laps : 7
"I’m happy with my qualifying position after the tricky weekend we have had so far. We have tried a lot of different solutions to solve the issues that we had yesterday but the changes that we expected to help, didn’t and the choices that we gambled with were the ones that finally worked. Therefore we found something for the qualifying which also meant that we were able to amend the rear grip issue and so I could set a good lap time. I’m pleased with 8th as I am on the third row, right next to Valentino and in front of Cal which is a solid place to begin the fight from. Furthermore, I am also excited to try the new setting in tomorrow’s warm up as I am keen to see how quick our pace is. For sure, it will be a long and challenging race but I am positive and now we just need to work on putting a good 25 laps together. It’s very easy to make a mistake at this track and we’ve seen a few riders lose the front so we need to study as much data as we can in order to prepare for it. Nevertheless, I am confident and ready for the battle tomorrow where I will be aiming to fight inside the top six again."
Postion : 11th Time : 1'41.385 Laps : 6
"Today was a day of two stories for me. In this morning’s free practice session I felt fine, I could ride comfortably and the setup of the bike was very positive after the small changes that we made yesterday. However, then our luck changed. The temperature increased quite sharply which caused the grip levels to drop and as a result we could not ride at the pace or rhythm that we wanted to. We need to take a look at the data in order to understand what happened and how we can fix this for the race tomorrow because even though the starting positions is not great, if we don’t fix this issue the race will be very tricky. In addition, we had some more bad luck as we got a defected rear tyre which has happened already before this year. This effectively caused me to lose my first set of laps but I remained out on track as I always tend to think that the second run will be better and there is a good chance of being able to improve. When I went in and changed the tyre, my feeling on the bike improved a lot and I scored my best time but I still lacked a bit of confidence after the first few laps. Then I pushed a bit too hard because the session was drawing to a close, hit a bump and crashed. This was a real shame as I could have cut another two or three tenths of a second and clinched a start on the row in front. However, this grid position means that I need to undertake a strong start and then battle from there. We will fight and do our best but it will be a challenging race."
ROW SEVEN FOR MILLER IN BARCELONA
The CWM LCR Honda Team’s Jack Miller will start tomorrow’s Grand Prix of Catalunya from the seventh row of the grid after a challenging qualifying session in the Barcelona sunshine.
The Australian had made some forward progress during the cooler morning practice, and despite a scary crash when the bumps unseated the brake pads on his Honda RC213V-RS, he had still hoped for a positive qualifying practice. However, once the temperatures soared in the afternoon, he found going tougher as he sealed 21st position on the grid for Sunday’s race.
Jack Miller #43 – 21st (1’42.928)
“We improved today, that’s for sure, but we are still having some problems with the front as well as some spinning in the rear which is really crucial around here. We’re making progress though, and made a big step during FP3 although it didn’t quite translate from free practice into the qualifier.”
“We’ll go back now and look over the data tonight to try and make a good bike for the warm up and see what we can do tomorrow in the race. The main thing is we need to get some more grip.”
Crash in Free Practice has stopped our qualifying ambitions
Racing weekend in Barcelona continues with unlucky Saturday to the Czech rider Karel Abraham after having big crash during fourth free practice in the afternoon. Abraham was taken to the medical centre and diagnosed with dislocation of the first left toe. For this reason was Abraham unable to take part in immediately following qualifying session. The Czech rider has to undergo further medical examinations. According to results will be decided about start to tomorrow´s race.
FRONT ROW START FOR CHAMPIONSHIP LEADER KENT
Moto3™ World Championship leader Danny Kent starts from the front row of the grid after finishing second in qualifying for the Monster Energy Grand Prix of Catalunya in Barcelona this afternoon. The 21 year old Wiltshire rider joins 17 year old Italian Enea Bastianini and Spaniard Jorge Navarro on the front row of the grid for the 22 lap race round the 2.937 miles circuit on the outskirts of the magnificent Mediterranean city. Riding the Leopard Racing Honda, Kent has already won three grands prix this season as he seeks to become the first British World Champion since Barry Sheene in 1977.
Scotsman John McPhee has experienced a difficult time of late after a good start to the season, but he qualified well in the sunshine and starts from the fourth row on the Racing Steps Foundation RTG Honda. It’s been an up and down weekend for Lincolnshire’s Sam Lowes in the Moto2™ class. He crashed the Speed Up machine twice in practice yesterday, survived a big moment in qualifying but still starts from the second row after qualifying in fifth place. Championship leader Johann Zarco starts from pole.
Oxfordshire’s Bradley Smith once again led the MotoGP™ charge. The Oxfordshire Monster Tech3 Yamaha rider starts from the third row after qualifying in eighth place following on from his fifth place at the previous round in Italy. Joining him on the third row is Isle of Man based midlander Cal Crutchlow, riding the CWM LCR Honda, despite a crash at the end of the 15 minute session. Gloucestershire’s Scott Redding is still finding it difficult adapting to the factory Marc VDS Honda and will start from the fifth row after qualifying in 14th place.
Local boy Aleix Espargaro re-wrote the history books by putting Suzuki in pole position for the first time in eight years and is joined on the front row for the 25 lap race by his team-mate Maverick Viñales and Jorge Lorenzo who chases his fourth successive victory on the Movistar Yamaha.