For the third time of the 2010 MotoGP Championship, Dani Pedrosa qualified on the pole, the Spaniard starting first on the grid for Sunday’s Czech Republic Grand Prix in Brno on Sunday, Round 10 of the 18-race schedule.
The Repsol Honda RC212V rider, who qualified on the pole at Mugello and Jerez, was just over three-tenths of a second quicker than the man starting from second on the grid, the American Ben Spies.
Pedrosa’s time of 1:56.508 also set a new fastest lap at Brno. He was quickest during Free Practice 2 Saturday morning, and carried that momentum into qualifying to take the lead. Pedrosa has won from the pole at Mugello, and also has a win at Sachsenring this year.
American fans will be delighted to see their Texan Spies starting from the front row. His time of 1:56.846 on the Monster Tech 3 Yamaha M1 shows the raw talent of the rookie. This was his best starting spot of the season, fourth at Assen his previous best.
The other Spaniard, Jorge Lorenzo, will start in third, the final spot on the front row. The Fiat Yamaha rider had a crash at Turn 11 during the end of the qualifying session, but reportedly was unharmed. Lorenzo, who leads the series with 210 points, 72 ahead of Pedrosa, will be chasing his eight win of the season on Sunday.
Starting from fourth is Ducati Team rider Casey Stoner. The Australian and his team worked hard overnight, attempting to correct rear tire grip issues on the GP10. He struggled during the beginning of qualifying, but got up to speed towards the end, posting a time only 0.360 of a second off Pedrosa. Stoner was the final rider to qualify under the 1:57 mark.
Lorenzo’s teammate Valentino Rossi posted a 1:57.059, and also went down a few moments after his partner hit the Brno pavement. The nine-time world champion went down at turn 13, and was also reportedly unharmed.
Compelting the second row is Pedrosa’s teammate, Andrea Dovizioso. He was 0.609 of a second off Pedrosa’s team, and is seeking his first win of the 2010 season.
Colin Edwards was the final rider to qualify within a second of the leader, the American posting a 1:57.222. The Monster Tech 3 rider’s time places him on the final spot in the second row. In seventh was the final American to be competing in the series, Ducati Team rider Nicky Hayden.
Hayden, who also crashed uninjured with 15 minutes to go, will be joined on the third row by rookie Páginas Amarillas Aspar Ducati rider Héctor Barberá and Rizla Suzuki rider Loris Capirossi.
Starting from 11th position is LCR Honda rider Randy de Puniet, who has recently returned to action after breaking his leg in a fiery wreck at Sachsenring, and went down during Free Practice 1 on Friday.
The rookie San Carlo Honda Gresini rider Marco Simoncelli also went down during qualifying, but managed to qualify in 12th position.
Taking the final spots were Pramac Racing Ducati rider Mika Kallio, Simoncelli’s teammate Marco Melandri, Interwetten Honda MotoGP rider Alex de Angelis and Kallio’s teammate, Aleix Espargaro.
The only rider who didn’t participate in the qualifying session due to a crash in morning practice was Rizla Suzuki rider Alvaro Bautista. It’s unknown if he’ll race on Sunday; an announcement will be made in the morning.
2011 MotoGP Brno Qualifying Results:
1 (26) Dani PEDROSA, SPA, Repsol Honda 1’56.508
2 (11) Ben SPIES, USA, Monster Yamaha Tech 3 1’56.846 0.338 / 0.338
3 (99) Jorge LORENZO, SPA, Fiat Yamaha 1’56.865 / 0.357 / 0.019
4 (27) Casey STONER, AUS, Ducati Team 1’56.868 / 0.360 / 0.003
5 (46) Valentino ROSSI, ITA, Fiat Yamaha 1’57.059 / 0.551 / 0.191
6 (4) Andrea DOVIZIOSO, ITA, Repsol Honda 1’57.117 / 0.609 / 0.058
7 (5) Colin EDWARDS, USA, Monster Yamaha Tech 3 1’57.222 / 0.714 / 0.105
8 (69) Nicky HAYDEN, USA, Ducati Team 1’57.635 / 1.127 / 0.413
9 (40) Hector BARBERA, SPA, Paginas Amarillas Aspar Ducati 1’57.960 / 1.452 / 0.325
10 (65) Loris CAPIROSSI, ITA, Rizla Suzuki MotoGP 1’57.981 / 1.473 / 0.021
11 (14) Randy DE PUNIET, FRA, LCR Honda MotoGP 1’58.089 / 1.581 / 0.108
12 (58) Marco SIMONCELLI, ITA, San Carlo Honda Gresini 1’58.169 / 1.661 / 0.080
13 (36) Mika KALLIO, FIN, Pramac Racing Team Ducati 1’58.182 / 1.674 / 0.013
14 (33) Marco MELANDRI, ITA, San Carlo Honda Gresini 1’58.430 / 1.922 / 0.248
15 (15) Alex DE ANGELIS, RSM, Interwetten Honda MotoGP 1’58.522/ 2.014 / 0.092
16 (41)Aleix ESPARGARO, SPA, Pramac Racing Team Ducati 1’58.700 / 2.192 / 0.178
Didn’t Participate: (19) Alvaro BAUTISTA, SPA, Rizla Suzuki MotoGP