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MotoGP Jerez Qualifying

Dani Pedrosa has taken his first pole of the 2010 MotoGP season at the Jerez motorcycle racetrack. A very valuable pole position and completely unexpected due to the problems he is having with the setup of his Honda RC212V.

In the definitive qualifying session, Pedrosa spent the first half working on the setup of his motorcycle and trying to find a solution to the constant and violent movements of his Honda RC212V.

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From the beginning of the qualifying session, Dani had already shown signs that his team is making progress and in just a few laps, he was in fourth place, behind Valentino Rossi (Yamaha M1), Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha M1) and Casey Stoner (Ducati GP10).

For a moment, Pedrosa was overtaken by Randy De Puniet on the non-factory Honda RC212V and down into fifth. But the Repsol rider rapidly recovered his position. This is the first pole position for Pedrosa this season, who has not clocked up a top time in a qualifying since the 2009 Indianapolis Moto Grand Prix.

Dani Pedrosa says: "It’s always nice to get pole position and especially here because it is my home race and the support from the fans is amazing, so I’m very happy for them. I really didn’t expect this pole to be honest, but I was pushing very hard so I’m very pleased about it. Actually though, it’s not so significant for me because the important thing is the performance in the race and we still need to work very hard on this area."

"The new frame is delivering some improvements but we’re still not all the way there and we must continue to work on the stability because this is very important in order to be competitive over race distance. Our rivals are also showing a lot of potential so we can’t relax in any way because this will be a long, tough race. Obviously I will start the race thinking about the win, and I know there will be a lot of fans out there cheering for me so I hope we can give them something special".

Andrea Dovizioso says: "I actually think we could have made it onto the second row today so I’m a little disappointed with the result this afternoon because it can be very important to start from the first two rows. We showed our full potential in the morning session where we were four tenths behind the fastest rider, so it’s a shame we couldn’t repeat that in qualifying."

"For the afternoon we made some adjustments to the electronics and machine set-up and this actually took us back a step, so tomorrow we will return to this morning’s set-up and I’m confident that will give us an improvement. Starting from the third row it will be important to make a good getaway and stay glued to the front riders because this is key to having a good race – as we saw in Qatar".

Jorge Lorenzo says: "I was very fast this morning and I hoped I would be again this afternoon, but we struggled a bit in the increased heat and couldn’t keep up quite such a good pace. This morning I could ride exactly how I wanted, which was a great feeling, but in qualifying it wasn’t exactly the same. Anyway, my lap time is not so bad and we are on the front row, which is very important. I am very excited about tomorrow and I feel confident that I can make a good race in front of the Spanish fans. This is a very special track to race at and I can’t wait to hear the crowd!"

Valentino Rossi says: "Of course it would be better to be on the front row but fourth is okay and I’m very happy about how much we’ve improved since this morning. After Pedrosa, the next five of us are all very close and this afternoon I was able to do some laps in the 39s with the harder Bridgestone tyre. We are fast now but we’re still not consistent enough so we have to work on this for tomorrow. My shoulder feels a lot better today and I have to say thank you to all of the Clinica Mobile and everyone who has worked on it. I am still lacking a bit of strength but the pain is okay. I am hoping for a great race tomorrow for all the fans."

Casey Stoner says: "We made a really strong start as soon as we rolled out onto the track yesterday but to be honest we haven’t made much progress with the set-up since then and nothing we have tried seems to have worked. As a result we went back to our original setting this afternoon and even though it was good enough for a front row position we still have plenty of room for improvement with it. It is going to be a busy warm-up session for us tomorrow morning and hopefully we can find something that helps us ahead of the race. In general the bike is still working better than it ever has around here though so I feel more confident for the race than I ever have at Jerez and I’m looking forward to the race tomorrow."

Nicky Hayden says: "The crash this morning wasn’t pretty but other than a couple of scrapes and bruises I’m fine. Considering I had a 130mph tumble I feel pretty good actually! Unfortunately it complicated things for the team because they had to work like dogs to fix the bike. I started the afternoon session on my other bike but we had a few issues with the gear shifter that we couldn’t resolve during the session so I had to jump on the bike I’d crashed. The guys were pretty sure it was okay but I wasn’t riding it because they wanted more time to check some things. I did a couple of 1’39.5s and it’s not crazy to suggest we had a couple more tenths in us that could have put us on the front row. Fifth place isn’t so bad – it’s going to be a long, hard race but I can’t wait to get started. I want to say thanks to the team for all their hard work today – hopefully I can pay them back with a good result tomorrow."

Colin Edwards says: "It has been hard work so far this weekend and a bit of a struggle if I’m being honest, so to finish seventh is a pretty good outcome for me. I seem to have been struggling with the electronics all weekend and we just haven’t been able to get to a point where it feels all that predictable, and that has been a big strength of the Yamaha. We’ve been experimenting with that a lot but I feel we made some decent progress. I changed the geometry on the front of the bike to make it more like the set-up that Valentino likes with a bit more weight on the front. That helped me a lot with the bike feeling a lot more balanced and now I’ve got more feel from the front. Tomorrow is going to be a typical Jerez race. You’ve got to hope you can come out Turn One unscathed, see where you’re at and then just go for it. It’s going to be a tough race but I’ll be giving it my all for the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team.

Ben Spies says: "I’m happy and it’s good to be in the middle of the third row because I can try and get a good start and see what’s going on in the first couple of laps and try and get up there. I was happier with my race set-up than what I had for the quick lap on the soft tyres. I didn’t mess anything up real big but I just couldn’t get into that qualifying mode and put that fast lap in. From not knowing where I was going yesterday, I’m happy to be in the top ten and hopefully I can get closer to the front and see what is going on up there. I’d like to think I can get in the battle for the top six but it’s going to be hard. Towards the end of the race is where I’ll be more comfortable because I’ll get in that rhythm and when the tyres go off I’ll feel a little better with the bike. I’ve got a pretty good feeling where I’m going on the track and I just need to change a few things for tomorrow and hopefully ride a littl e better. But I’m looking forward to my first race in Jerez."

Loris Capirossi says: "I am very disappointed with today because everybody has tried so hard. We tried to find the best setting for the bike and in this afternoon’s session it just didn’t work like it had done this morning. I just didn’t have the right feel from the front and I struggled a lot. We tried to modify things but we didn’t find a solution. For tomorrow we will need to do something because we are not so far from the front guys – even with this problem – and I am sure we can be competitive. It is not the position I want on the grid, but tomorrow is another day and I will be trying really hard in the race to make things better."

Álvaro Bautista says: "I have improved on my best time here and we have done quite a good job today. This morning I tried some different settings between the two bikes and in the afternoon we chose one of the set-ups and I am sure it is the right one. With the hard tyre I did a long ride and was quite happy with my time in the mid 1’40s – this is quite positive for me. I still have a few issues after a few laps because I am feeling that the tyre is moving too much, but we will work on that in the warm-up and see what we can do. On the softer rear tyre I tried to push to the maximum, but this is not like 250s, in 250 you can brake much later and with the MotoGP bike it is more difficult to do one fast lap, but I am learning! I am quite happy and want to have a good home race and get into a fight with a group further up the grid. I t is very important to do my best and give a good race for Suzuki, the sponsors and all my family and fans."

Randy De Puniet says: "I am very happy because it has been a very good qualifying session. I am just 8 hundredths off the front row and the adjustments we have made on the bike work well especially on race trim. This afternoon we concentrated to obtain the second row and we are delighted with this result as we are the first independent team on the grid for the second time after Qatar GP. My target is to keep this placement in tomorrows race to repeat the positive result we gained in Qatar but I know it won’t be so easy".

Marco Melandri says: "We had a great session today, setting an excellent pace and I´m really confident about the race. We´re struggling a bit for rear grip but we´re working to improve and I think with a small step forward we can make a big improvement. It is a shame about the qualifying lap because I made a small mistake on my last effort and it cost me a lot of time in the final sector. Anyway, I think that with a good start we can have a fun race tomorrow. I´m happy because we´ve done a good job together, everybody in the team is highly motivated and I think we have created the right atmosphere to improve."

Marco Simoncelli says: "After this morning´s session I was hoping for better this afternoon but we´re still struggling a little and I can´t ride how I want. The reality is that we´re not that far off the top guys – 1.3 seconds isn´t a big gap but I am still in sixteenth. All we can do is try to improve a little more before tomorrow and then do our best to make up positions in the race."

Aleix Espargaro says: "After the good feeling of the second free practice in the morning, where I got a time that made me hope for the qualifications of the early afternoon. Unfortunately while I was pushing to improve my lap time, I stumbled upon a crash that made me lose precious time. In any case I have greatly improved the feeling with the motorbike and the track, reducing my best lap time more than a second. Tomorrow I will do my best for the many Spanish fans who come here to follow me. "

Mika Kallio says: "Starting in last place on the grid is not the best, I will fight very hard to overtake my competitors. The first corner is near the starting line and if I start well I can take many positions already at the end of the turb. Today I had some problems handling my motorbike, I could not control it perfectly. The positive think that remains is that I have reduced my lap time compared to yesterday morning’s free practice time. I hope to get a good result tomorrow in the race and to give a turn to my season. The whole team deserves a good result for all the work they are doing for me. "

Moto GP Jerez Qualifying Results

FRONT ROW

1. Dani Pedrosa (SPA) Repsol Honda Team – 1’39.202

2. Jorge Lorenzo (SPA) Fiat Yamaha Team – 1’39.487

3. Casey Stoner (AUS) Ducati Marlboro Team – 1’39.511

SECOND ROW

4. Valentino Rossi (ITA) Fiat Yamaha Team 1’39.558

5. Nicky Hayden (USA) Ducati Marlboro Team 1’39.560

6. Randy de Puniet (FRA) LCR Honda MotoGP – 1’39.591

THIRD ROW

7. Colin Edwards (USA) Monster Yamaha Tech 3 – 1’39.970

8. Ben Spies (USA) Monster Yamaha Tech 3 – 1’39.989

9. Andrea Dovizioso (ITA) Repsol Honda Team – 1’40.021

FOURTH ROW

10. Marco Melandri (ITA) San Carlo Honda Gresini – 1’40.027

11. Loris Capirossi (ITA) Rizla Suzuki MotoGP – 1’40.206

12. Hiroshi Aoyama (JAP) Interwetten-Honda MotoGP – 1’40.322

FIFTH ROW

13. Alvaro Bautista (SPA) Rizla Suzuki MotoGP – 1’40.416

14. Hector Barbera (SPA) Aspar Team – 1’40.482

15. Aleix Espargaro (SPA) Pramac Green Team – 1’40.555

SIXTH ROW

16. Marco Simoncelli (ITA) San Carlo Honda Gresini – 1’40.586

17. Mika Kallio (FIN) Pramac Green Team – 1’40.803

Jerez: Record Lap: V. Rossi (Yamaha) 2009 – 1’39.818

Jerez: Best Lap: J. Lorenzo (Yamaha) 2008 – 1’38.189