MotoGP Brno: Marquez takes ninth pole

Marc Marquez continues his unstoppable march to a second consecutive title by leading a very tight field with top 11 riders separated by half a second

motogp brno qualifying marc marquez
2014/08/16 - mgp - Round11 - Brno - MotoGP - Marc Marquez - Repsol Honda - RC213V - ActionAndrew Northcott

Repsol Honda's Marc Marquez once again put his stamp on the qualifying proceedings at the Brno circuit in the Czech Republic by setting the quickest lap midway through the session with Pramac Ducati's Andrea Iannone using him for a tow to qualify third, and then continuing his dominance by setting an even quicker time later in the session. Ducati's Andrea Dovisioso made it two Ducatis on the front row at Brno with an excellent effort to qualify second just 0.012 seconds under Iannone's time, while Monster Tech 3 Yamaha's Bradley Smith leads the second row just 0.004 seconds behind Iannone. Dani Pedrosa and Jorge Lorenzo fill out the second row, with Valentino Rossi suffering the aftereffects of a crash in FP4 to lead the third row.

"Today in FP4 we tried some things with the setup and it wasn’t perfect," Marquez said. "But then in the qualifying we went back and it was much better. We will see tomorrow, but I think tomorrow the strongest rival will be Dani." When queried about towing around Iannone, who has angered other riders in the past with his penchant for waiting for faster riders to come past so he can use them as a "rabbit" to chase, Marquez simply brushed it off. "Yeah, it’s OK, for me it’s not a problem. In the end I need to watch the main opponents for the championship. Of course he try to follow the faster riders, but even if he makes pole it’s OK; of course, inside I really won’t be happy, but it’s like that. Motorcycles are always like that, someone always try to follow you and you need to manage that."

Dovisioso was surprised at his performance, but was still hopeful after continuing some small progress. "From FP1 we were really fast. Our pace with the medium rear tire is really good every session so I’m a little bit surprised, I didn’t expect to be this competitive at this track, but our bike has improved a little bit. In the qualifying I had a really good lap time. I had the feeling that I could make a good lap time with the soft tire. But I’m happier about the pace for the race; our target at this moment is to reduce the gap to the fastest riders so I think we have the possibility tomorrow to reduce this a little bit."

"Today Marc helped me a lot I think," confessed Iannone. "Tonight I’ll pay dinner for Marc (laughs). I pushed really hard for this lap; I’m happy because yesterday I didn’t have a good feeling with my bike. Dovi was a lot faster than me, so I worked really hard with my team to improve my performance. I think tomorrow I have a really good possibility to do well. It’s very important for me tomorrow to challenge Andrea because today I think Andrea’s pace was two-tenths quicker than me."

Lorenzo had problems getting the hard front tire to work to his liking, and will be looking to find a solution. "It seems that with this track the tarmac seems a little bit old and also there’s more bumps compared to last year. With the hard front tire we still don’t have the setup to absorb the bumps, and it seems with the soft tire it absorbs the bumps better and for me to make one quick lap it seemed better. The problem is that tomorrow depending on the weather it will almost be impossible to use the soft one, it’s going to be too risky. So we have to try to improve the bike with the hard tire to try and absorb the bumps in the middle of the corner."

MotoGP Brno final qualifying results:

Pos. Rider Country Team Machine Time
1 Marc Marquez SPA Repsol Honda Team Honda 1:55.585
2 Andrea Dovisioso ITA Ducati Team Ducati 1:55.714
3 Andrea Iannone ITA Pramac Racing Ducati 1:55.726
4 Bradley Smith GBR Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Yamaha 1:55.730
5 Dani Pedrosa SPA Repsol Honda Team Honda 1:55.812
6 Jorge Lorenzo SPA Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha 1:55.815
7 Valentino Rossi ITA Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha 1:55.821
8 Stefan Bradl GER LCR Honda MotoGP Honda 1:55.871
9 Pol Espargaro SPA Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Yamaha 1:55.899
10 Aleix Espargaro SPA NGM Forward Racing Forward Yamaha 1:56.090
11 Cal Crutchlow GBR Ducati Team Ducati 1:56.129
12 Yonny Hernandez COL Energy T.I. Pramac Racing Ducati 1:56.622
13 Michele Pirro ITA Ducati Team Ducati 1:57.093
14 Alvaro Bautista SPA GO&FUN Honda Gresini Honda 1:57.428
15 Scott Redding GBR GO&FUN Honda Gresini Honda 1:57.557
16 Hiroshi Aoyama JPN Drive M7 Aspar Honda 1:57.984
17 Karel Abraham CZE Cardion AB Motoracing Honda 1:58.100
18 Leon Camier GBR Drive M7 Aspar Honda 1:58.635
19 Danilo Petrucci ITA Octo Ioda Racing Ioda/Aprilia 1:58.863
20 Alex De Angelis ITA NGM Forward Racing Forward Yamaha 1:58.948
21 Hector Barbera SPA Avintia Racing FTR/Kawasaki 1:58.968
22 Michael Laverty IRL Paul Bird Motorsport ART/Aprilia 1:58.968
23 Broc Parkes AUS Paul Bird Motorsport ART/Aprilia 1:59.581
24 Mike Di Meglio FRA Avintia Racing FTR/Kawasaki 2:00.117