MotoGP: Quartararo takes pole position for Spanish GP
MotoGP leader Fabio Quartararo secured his third consecutive pole position of the season with a stunning lap at the Circuito de Jerez-Angel Nieto on Saturday. The Monster Energy Yamaha rider clocked a time of 1:36.755, beating Brad Binder of Red Bull KTM Factory Racing by 0.231 seconds. Jorge Martin of Prima Pramac Racing completed the front row, just 0.013 seconds behind Binder.
Quartararo, who won the last two races in Portugal and Qatar, said he was very happy with his performance and confident for the race on Sunday. “I felt really good on the bike, I did a great lap and I’m very happy to be on pole again. It’s always special to be on pole here in Jerez, it’s one of my favourite tracks. I think we have a good pace for tomorrow, we worked well on the tyres and the bike setup. I’m looking forward to the race and I hope we can fight for the victory.”
Binder, who achieved his best qualifying result in MotoGP, said he was surprised by his speed and hoped to maintain it in the race. “I’m really happy, it was a bit unexpected to be honest. I didn’t think I had such a good lap in me, but I managed to put it together and it felt amazing. It’s a great feeling to be on the front row for the first time in MotoGP. I hope we can have a good start tomorrow and stay with the front guys as long as possible.”
Martin, who returned to action after missing two races due to a crash in Portugal, said he was proud of his comeback and thanked his team for their support. “I’m very happy, it’s incredible to be on the front row after such a difficult time. I want to thank my team, my doctors and my family for helping me to recover and come back stronger. It was not easy to ride again after the injury, but I felt good on the bike and I pushed hard. I’m very proud of what we did today and I hope we can have a good race tomorrow.”
The second row of the grid was formed by Marco Bezzecchi of Mooney VR46 Racing Team, who impressed in his fourth MotoGP appearance, Francesco Bagnaia of Ducati Lenovo Team, who leads the championship standings by 15 points over Quartararo, and Takaaki Nakagami of LCR Honda IDEMITSU, who was the top Honda rider in qualifying.
The third row featured Miguel Oliveira of CryptoDATA RNF MotoGP Team, who showed a strong pace on the Aprilia RS-GP, Alex Marquez of Gresini Racing MotoGP, who outqualified his brother Marc for the first time in MotoGP, and Fabio Di Giannantonio of Gresini Racing MotoGP, who also made his debut in the top 10.
The fourth row was occupied by Jack Miller of Red Bull KTM Factory Racing, who struggled to find his rhythm on the KTM RC16, Joan Mir of Repsol Honda Team, who had a crash in FP4 and could not improve his lap time in Q2, and Raul Fernandez of CryptoDATA RNF MotoGP Team, who was the best rookie in qualifying.
The fifth row saw Aleix Espargaro of Aprilia Racing, who had a technical issue on his bike and could not complete a flying lap in Q2, Maverick ViÃ±ales of Aprilia Racing, who had a disappointing session after topping FP4, and Johann Zarco of Prima Pramac Racing, who crashed at turn 11 and ended his hopes of a good grid position.