MotoGP: Viñales lights up Losail for pole Yamaha, Ducati and Honda get ready for a showdown

MotoGP: Viñales lights up Losail for pole Yamaha, Ducati and Honda get ready for a showdown

Losail – Saturday, 09 March 2019– Maverick Viñales (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) has taken the first MotoGP pole position of the 2019 season at the VisitQatar Grand Prix, a 1:53.546 enough to give him a little breathing space ahead of Andrea Dovizioso (Mission Winnow Ducati) and Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team), who join him on the front row of the grid. Viñales was two tenths clear, but the gap between Dovizioso and Marquez was an infinitesimal and mouth-watering 0.001. Three previous winners and three different manufacturers on the front row, the first qualifying session of the season sets a stunning scene for Sunday.

Fabio Quartararo (Petronas Yamaha SRT) impressed early as the rookie initially shot to the top of the times, only to be beaten almost immediately by Q1 graduate Takaaki Nakagami (LCR Honda Idemitsu). That’s when Viñales struck, storming to the summit with a lap that was 0.741 quicker than anyone else. Quartararo and Nakagami exchanged second fastest laps to leave the Japanese rider 0.395 off as the field headed in for a change of tyres, but it was soon about to change.

Viñales led the troops back out for their second runs and the goalposts were moved once more. Three more tenths were shaved off his best time, with Miller then slotting into P2 and just 0.2 off. The Australian crashed at Turn 2 soon after though, ending his hopes of pole and leaving his time under threat. Dovizioso needed no second invitation, making a move into second place soon after. The Italian looked set to challenge Viñales again as he went over a tenth under after the first split, but the lap was gone by the second sector; his qualifying effort over.

Attention then turned to Marquez, who was on the tail of Danilo Petrucci (Mission Winnow Ducati Team) as neither sat on the provisional front row with little time left. Tactics on point, the reigning World Champion was able to snatch P3 from Miller. Encouraged by the front row at a difficult track, the number 93 is ready to fight it out on Sunday.

Miller therefore heads up the second row as top Independent, but it was a pretty close challenge from Quartararo by the end of the session. The French rookie retained his stunning pace so far and lines up fifth, just a tenth and a half off the Aussie. Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda Castrol) completes an all-Independent second row, with plenty of honour – and points – up for grabs for each.

Quartararo heads out as Hamilton looks on

Petrucci starts seventh and, after outpacing teammate Dovizioso for much of testing, will be gunning to move forward on race day and battle for his first victory. Franco Morbidelli (Petronas Yamaha SRT) is P8, with Nakagami eventually knocked down to ninth. Alex Rins (Team Suzuki Ecstar) completes the top ten and was a crasher on Saturday – another who’ll be looking for much more once the lights go out. Rookie teammate Joan Mir is right behind him.

Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini) is P12, ahead of rookie Francesco Bagnaia (Alma Pramac Racing). Then come two big surprises: Valentino Rossi (Monster Energy Yamaha MotoGP) in P14 after a tough day and Jorge Lorenzo (Repsol Honda Team) in P15. Lorenzo suffered two crashes, but is fit to race.

Can Rossi and Lorenzo fight through the pack? Will the front row starters become the battle for the win? Can the likes of Petrucci and Rins push forward? And which of the rookies will win the battle for top honours once we’re racing?

Find out from 20:00 (GMT +3) on Sunday for the first Grand Prix of the season.

Moto2

Schrötter strikes for first career pole in Qatar
German over a tenth clear of Vierge to take the opening pole position of 2019

Marcel Schrötter (Dynavolt Intact GP) is set to start the VisitQatar Grand Prix from his first ever pole position, setting a best time of 1:58.585 to beat Xavi Vierge (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) by 0.146, with Free Practice’s fastest man Lorenzo Baldassarri (Flexbox HP 40) completing the front row.

It was the first time the intermediate class had taken part in a Q1, Q2 format qualifying and it was Schrötter who set the early pace before creating his own first. Pole set on his sixth flier, he ended the session 0.146 ahead of Vierge, with Baldassarri jumping up the timesheets in the latter stages to grab a front row start – just 0.199 from pole.

After progressing from Q1, Luca Marini (Sky Racing Team VR46) put in a good shift in Q2 to head the second row in fourth, although it could have been better if not for the Italian crashing at Turn 2 with just over two minutes to go. Gardner starts fifth, ahead of Sam Lowes (Federal Oil Gresini Moto2) in sixth, 0.260 from pole.

Tom Lüthi (Dynavolt Intact GP) will line up seventh on his first start since returning to the Moto2™ class, the Swiss rider 0.419 off his teammate’s pole lap, with Brad Binder (Red Bull KTM Ajo) joining him on the third row in P8. Alex Marquez (EG 0,0 Marc VDS) will lineup ninth for the opening race of the year, with fellow Spaniard Augusto Fernandez (Flexbox HP 40) completing the top ten.

Reigning Moto3™ World Champion Jorge Martin (Red Bull KTM Ajo) crashed during FP2, rider ok, and he starts P11 as the leading rookie.

A cracking qualifying in Qatar sets us up nicely for the first Moto2™ race of the new Triumph era. Who will take victory? Find out when the intermediate class go racing at 18:20 local time (GMT+3) on Sunday.

 

 

Moto3

Canet storms to opening Moto3™ pole
Two tenths clear of the rest in a manic debut Q2, the Spaniard stayed in his Friday form

Sterilgarda Max Racing’s Aron Canet clinched the first Moto3™ pole position of the season in impressive fashion at the VisitQatar Grand Prix, the only man the go beneath the 2:06 barrier and eventually finishing just under two tenths clear of the chasing pack with a 2:05.883. The front row is completed by two men starting from there for the first time: Lorenzo Dalla Porta (Leopard Racing) in second, although he was on the podium at Losail last season, and Kaito Toba (Honda Team Asia) in third.

John McPhee (Petronas Sprinta Racing) starts from fourth and could be one to watch as a former podium finisher at the venue too, impressing in the first ever Moto3™ Q2 despite coming through Q1. SIC58 Squadra Corse’s Nicollo Antonelli, who starts fifth, is another with a top record as the Italian won in 2016. He recovered from a crash at Turn 10 with seven minutes left on the clock in Q2.

Albert Arenas (Sama Qatar Angel Nieto Team) will sit on the outside of the second row of the grid, ahead of Italy’s Tony Arbolino (Snipers Team) and Sky Racing Team VR46’s Celestino Vietti after he became the first man to top a Moto3™ Q1 session. Reale Avintia Arizona 77’s Vicente Perez ended the session ninth quickest, just three thousandths of a second ahead of reigning Junior Moto3™ World Champion Raul Fernandez (Sama Qatar Angel Nieto Team).

A hugely frustrated Romano Fenati (Snipers Racing) had to settle for eleventh on the grid after not leaving pitlane for his last attempt at taking pole position until there was exactly two minutes remaining, meaning the chequered flag came out before he could start a final flying lap. Can he fight back through in the race? Find out from 17:00 (GMT +3) on Sunday.

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16 minutes ago

MotoGP

There wasn't a dry eye in the house after Tatsuki Suzuki's victory at Misano! 👏

Watch the dramatic conclusion to the #Moto3 race which saw the Japanese youngster triumph! 🏆

#SanMarinoGP 🇸🇲
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2 hrs ago

F1

How cool is this?! 😮😍
Drone footage of the new MCL35 - McLaren 👏👏👏
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Comment on Facebook

Just highlights how gash that new final complex is at Barcelona They should go back to the original last 2 corners for better opportunities to overtake after the final turn

A Drone faster than a MCL 🤔 2020 won't be a good year for McLaren..

Been thinking about why not f1 and others have integrated this yet? Helicopter shots are great but this is another necessary dimension.

SUCH a cool shot! I want more of this!!! That poor McLaren was really waiting on the drone though! 😂

Drone shots would be good, but what happens when the signal fails and the drone drops on the track. Or theres a mechanical fault and the drone drops on track. Or the battery runs out and the drone drops on track.

We need this type of footages live on race days. "Wheel to wheel" battles might look cool from this angles...

I would love to build a copter that can easily keep up with F1 and shoot proper vid. If someone covers the costs that is 😉

Drones are very fast. Especially the ones are custom made can easily catch an F1. Maybe not a full 300kmh but up to 200kmh. All in bling of an eye.

More impressed at the skills of the drone pilot 😂

Fantastic, it would be nice if it were broadcast like that. how exciting that sound. Beautiful MacLaren, and that sound, it's really good to hear

Really amazing footage, specially at low speed corners at the chicane.. wow !!

How can a drone keep up with an F1 engine? It's the most advanced technology in the history of the planet...comon...

That needs to be how they cover the races on television. That is spectacular and definitely entertaining.

Carlos driving the McLaren...maybe Lando is driving the drone🤔. McLaren's children are still playing, for sure😃

I vote for drone cameras for the starting grid for lights out!

Mclaren should change its name to 'Welostalready'.

World drift championship has had this for a few seasons, unbelievable footage!

Is this a preview of "Formula Drone"

Think the drone was beyond track limits there...

This make it looks slow... keep copter view when skyview is needed

Ive been flying drones over Open Wheelers for 3 years now. Just finished TRS 2020. We've done both live stream and record for post shows.

Wow! Would be great if they add this view while broadcasting.

Is it just me or is does the power unit sound different to last year?

Great but shouldn't a multi million dollar race car outrun a cheap drone?

Even the drone is faster... Sorry Mclaren 😂😂😂

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3 hrs ago

24H Series

VORTEX V8 will be joning us again this season! The French team that build their own cars will be joining multiple races this season. The team will join with their Vortex Light V8's at:

🇮🇹: 1x 12H Monza,
🇵🇹: 1x 24H Portimao,
🇫🇷: 2x 9H Paul Ricard,
🇪🇸: 2x 24H Barcelona and
🇮🇹: 2x 12H Imola

Great news coming from France!

#thisisendurance #24HSERIES #12hmonza #24HPORTIMAO #9hpaulricard #24hbarcelona #12himola #24hseries2020
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VORTEX V8 will be joning us again this season! The French team that build their own cars will be joining multiple races this season. The team will join with their Vortex Light V8s at:

🇮🇹: 1x 12H Monza,
🇵🇹: 1x 24H Portimao,
🇫🇷: 2x 9H Paul Ricard,
🇪🇸: 2x 24H Barcelona and
🇮🇹: 2x 12H Imola

Great news coming from France! 

#thisisendurance #24hseries #12HMONZA #24HPORTIMAO #9HPAULRICARD #24HBARCELONA #12HIMOLA #24HSeries2020

Comment on Facebook

Great news! This little pretty car is a nice presence in series 👍

3 hrs ago

MotoGP

🇯🇵 Suzuki starts from maiden pole!
💢 Sasaki tangles with Garcia!
🔝 Arbolino edges ahead!

Watch the eventful early exchanges as #Moto3 arrived at Misano in 2019!

#SanMarinoGP 🇸🇲
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Comment on Facebook

Tutondele papa a foto diaku diambote

nice

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