2017 Aragon MotoGP Qualifying: Vinales Tops Lorenzo & Rossi for Pole

2017 Aragon MotoGP Qualifying: Yamaha's Valentino Rossi
Yamaha's Valentino Rossi

2017 Aragon MotoGP Qualifying Results

All eyes were on Movistar Yamaha MotoGP’s Valentino Rossi at Motorland Aragon for round 14 of 18 in 2017 MotoGP. Just three weeks earlier, Rossi broke his leg.

His appearance at Aragon was questionable, but that changed on Thursday after he was declared medically fit to compete. And the nine-time World Champion didn’t deny his fans any slacking performance during Saturday’s qualifying for the Aragon Grand Prix.

Rossi, who broke his right tibia and fibula in an enduro training crash August 31, finished qualifying in third position. The nine-time World Champion qualified third, just 0.18 of a second behind the man on pole, teammate Maverick Vinales. Qualifying second was Ducati Team’s Jorge Lorenzo.

2017 Aragon MotoGP Qualifying: Yamaha's Valentino Rossi
Yamaha’s Valentino Rossi

“I think we did a great job after sustaining the injury,” Valentino Rossi says. “I have to thank all the people that helped me, starting with the doctor that did the surgery. After that I worked very hard every day with my trainer and the leg is becoming better every day. Sincerely, on the bike I feel some pain, but I can ride quite comfortably, so I‘m very happy. It‘s very important to start from the front row and now we have to understand the pace and also if I‘m able to push until the end, but anyway I‘m happy.”

Rossi will start a record 301 GP starts Sunday for the 23-lap Aragon Grand Prix that will take riders 72.5 miles.

As for Vinales, this his second-straight pole, and fifth overall, of 2017 MotoGP. The Spaniard posted the time with 1:47.635, exactly a second slower than the best lap recorded by Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez in 2015.

2017 Aragon MotoGP Qualifying: Yamaha's Maverick Vinales
Yamaha’s Maverick Vinales

“The conditions were a little bit more difficult compared to this morning, to make a good lap, but anyway the team did a great job so I‘m really happy,” Maverick Vinales says. “Every time we‘re doing better qualifications and we‘re more consistent on the bike.

“I hope we can keep these good feelings, especially before the race tomorrow. We have been improving a lot since the Misano test. The dry bike has good potential and rides well all the time, but we have to improve in the rain, so we‘re keeping that in mind, in order to be consistent. Honestly, it’s incredible what Valentino did today, I have no words. He always delivers great results and it‘s positive that Valentino is also fast, because we can see things on the bike and compare the data for tomorrow.”