|Youngest EVER winner, come Sunday?
Photo: Repsol Honda
After the second qualifying session of 2013, under the new format, it is Marc Marquez who will start tomorrow’s inaugural Austin Grand Prix from pole position. The new style format once again provided much entertainment for fans, as was the intention, with the Repsol Honda rider ultimately setting a fastest time of 2m 3.021, on his 2nd flying lap of the Texan circuit.
Rookie Bryan Staring and Desmosedici refugee Abraham had a coming together with 7 minutes to go. A mistake from Karel, wiping out the Aussie at slow speeds, going into turn 15. Karel suffered a broken collarbone in the collision, whether he will race or not tomorrow remains to be seen.
Michael Laverty on the PBM bike managed a highly respectable 17th. He sits less than half a second behind 16th placed team mate, Yonny Hernandez on the PBM ART CRT. MLav’s all new bike for this season is making progress, and showing good pace up against the other CRT’s, on a ‘blank canvas’ circuit.
Meanwhile, wildcarding Mike Barnes failed to qualify for even QP1, given he was out of the 107% barrier at the end of FP4. His participation in tomorrow’s race will be at the discretion of the race director.
‘Read more’ for Q2 story…
At the beginning of QP2 it seemed that all riders other than Marquez rushed out on track, with the young spaniard sitting out for the first couple of minutes. It was Lorenzo who primarily topped the sheets, immediately posting a 2:04.
Marquez ventured out quickly after to almost put the 2012 champion to shame, with a lap time of 2m 3.245, nearly a second and a half quicker than JL99. With 8 minutes to go, Repsol Honda’s senior rider, Dani Pedrosa responded to the ground breaking pace of his team mate, putting his RC213V into second place, but still a second off the top.
All the while, Crutchlow was creeping up the leaderboard into fourth, forming his own little battle with LCR Honda’s Stefan Bradl. The German relegated the Tech3 rider into 5th with a minute to go, but this was short lived as Cal moved back into 4th, come the time the flag came out.
Andrea Dovizioso moved into 6th spot with 5 minutes to go, ahead of Gresini rider Alvaro Bautista. They remain in their own little bubble, comfortably ahead of Rossi, and a few tenths behind Bradl.
Valentino Rossi had a near scare. He will start tomorrow’s race from 8th, just ahead of CRT rider Aleix Espargaro. Behind them lies the two Americans, Hayden and Spies… with Bradley Smith sandwiched between the Desmosedici riders. The trio round out the top twelve.
|1||Aleix ESPARGARO||Power Electronics Aspar||2’06.112|
|2||Bradley SMITH||Monster Yamaha Tech 3||2’06.591||0.479 / 0.479|
|3||Andrea IANNONE||Energy T.I. Pramac Racing||2’06.872||0.760 / 0.281|
|4||Randy DE PUNIET||Power Electronics Aspar||2’07.129||1.017 / 0.257|
|5||Hector BARBERA||Avintia Blusens||2’07.717||1.605 / 0.588|
|6||Yonny HERNANDEZ||Paul Bird Motorsport||2’07.738||1.626 / 0.021|
|7||Michael LAVERTY||Paul Bird Motorsport||2’08.259||2.147 / 0.521|
|8||Colin EDWARDS||NGM Mobile Forward Racing||2’08.475||2.363 / 0.216|
|9||Claudio CORTI||NGM Mobile Forward Racing||2’08.792||2.680 / 0.317|
|10||Danilo PETRUCCI||Came IodaRacing Project||2’08.825||2.713 / 0.033|
|11||Hiroshi AOYAMA||Avintia Blusens||2’09.062||2.950 / 0.237|
|12||Bryan STARING||GO&FUN Honda Gresini||2’10.098||3.986 / 1.036|
|13||Lukas PESEK||Came IodaRacing Project||2’10.507||4.395 / 0.409|
|14||Blake YOUNG||Attack Performance Racing||2’10.606||4.494 / 0.099|
|15||Karel ABRAHAM||Cardion AB Motoracing||2’23.317||17.205 / 12.711|