Marc Marquez has impressively collected his sixth pole position of the 2013 MotoGP season, beating Casey Stoner’s Misano lap record in the process. The championship leader will start alongside Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi, with teammate Dani Pedrosa coming from fourth place on the grid.
As qualifying drew to a close at Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli, it looked as though Marquez had beaten Lorenzo by just 24 thousandths of a second. The Repsol Honda Team man (despite having suffered an accident during the preceding fourth practice session) then delivered a crushing blow in the form of 1’32.915, establishing the new qualifying record and sealing his second consecutive pole by over half a second. Lorenzo was comfortably second ahead of Yamaha Factory Racing partner Rossi, both now running with seamless shifter gearboxes for the first time. In fourth spot, Honda’s Pedrosa – on pole last year – was clearly frustrated for the duration of the day and was eight tenths of a second off the pole position time.
Cal Crutchlow delivered an inspiring lap for fifth place, having been outside of the combined top ten in practice which meant he passed through Q1 for the first time. The Englishman will fill the middle of Row 2 ahead of Aleix Espargaro, again very much punching above his weight to qualify his CRT-specification Power Electronics Aspar ART machine in sixth position. Stefan Bradl starts seventh for LCR Honda MotoGP, ahead of GO&FUN Honda Gresini’s Alvaro Bautista (who finished on the podium here last year) and Ducati Team duo Andrea Dovizioso and Nicky Hayden.
A total of six Italians will start this weekend’s race, two being on Row 4 as Pramac Racing teammates Michele Pirro and Andrea Iannone have qualified 11th and 12th. Bradley Smith struggled to 13th spot after at Turn 14 crash at the end of Q1, while Hector Barbera managed 17thplace as the only Avintia Blusens rider to be running with a new pneumatic valve engine. The 24-rider grid will be completed by Came IodaRacing Project’s Lukas Pesek, with six races remaining in the 2013 season.
As he also did at Indianapolis in mid-August, Marc Marquez has topped every season in which he has taken part so far this weekend.