News 5 Aug 2018

Dovizioso edges Rossi for Czech Republic MotoGP pole

Miller 17th fastest in challenging qualifying session.

Source: Supplied.

Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) will be starting the Czech grand prix from pole position – his first since 2016 – as he just edged out an equally incredible lap from compatriot Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) at the Brno circuit, making it 1-2 for the veteran Italians.

Reigning champion Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) – who is making his 100th premier class start – completes the front row as the last man able to get into the 1:54 bracket, setting up a tantalising prospect for race day in the Czech Republic.

Everything went down to the wire and on the first run it was advantage Marquez, but Jorge Lorenzo (Ducati Team) soon hit back to pull out exactly half a second. The story was far from over, however, as Marquez was then able to do a 1m54s – the first of the weekend.

It looked like it could be a done deal, but a final run for Dovizioso and Rossi saw the two leapfrog the Spaniards in the final seconds of the session. For ‘DesmoDovi’ it’s a stunning 1m54.689s, with Rossi 0.267s back but able to edge Marquez – by only 0.005s.

Lorenzo heads up the second row after just missing out on that front row, and the number 99 will surely be a threat from there as he remains the man to watch when the lights go out. Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda Castrol) takes fifth and is top Independent Team rider at the venue that hosted his first ever GP win, with Danilo Petrucci (Pramac Racing) taking sixth and bouncing back well despite a technical problem with one of his machines at the end of FP4.

Johann Zarco (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) took P7 and leads the charge on row three, with the Frenchman joined by both Team Suzuki Ecstar machines. Andrea Iannone just leads teammate and Q1 graduate Alex Rins as they followed up their front running FP4 pace in P8 and P9 respectively in Q2, with Friday’s fastest and 11-time Brno podium finisher Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team) completing the top 10.

Tito Rabat (Reale Avintia Racing) will line up eleventh, with Maverick Viñales (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) down in P12 after coming through Q1 and then proving unable to replicate his laptime from that session.

Franco Morbidelli (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) is top rookie in P13 after just missing out on Q2, ahead of Alvaro Baustista (Angel Nieto Team) – a Q1 crasher – and Bradley Smith (Red Bull KTM Factory Racing), who completed the top 15 for the Austrian factory. Australian Jack Miller (Pramac Racing) was 17th fastest.

After taking his first Moto2 front row and podium at the German GP, Luca Marini (Sky Racing Team VR46) continued his fine form at Brno by securing his maiden grand prix pole position, beating Alex Marquez (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) and Mattia Pasini (Italtrans Racing Team) by less than two tenths. Fourth and fifth in the time sheets were credited to Miguel Oliveira (Red Bull KTM Ajo) and Marcel Schrötter (Dynavolt Intact GP), while Aussie Remy Gardner (Tech3 Racing) was 19th fastest.

Jakub Kornfeil (Redox PrustelGP) claimed a first Moto3 Czech pole in any class since Misano 2007 and was the first Czech rider to take pole in Brno at Brno after timing his lap to perfection to delight the home crowd, as John McPhee (CIP – Green Power) and Marcos Ramirez (Bester Capital Dubai) completed the top three ahead of Philipp Oettl (Südmetall Schedl GP Racing) and Fabio Di Giannantonio (Del Conca Gresini Moto3).

Detailed results