San Marino GP: Bridgestone qualifying report

Home pole for Rossi in last-lap shootout at Misano Using a hard compound front and medium compound rear Bridgestone slick tyre, Fiat Yamaha's Valentino Rossi scored his sixth pole position of the season on his final lap of the hour-long ...

Home pole for Rossi in last-lap shootout at Misano

Using a hard compound front and medium compound rear Bridgestone slick tyre, Fiat Yamaha's Valentino Rossi scored his sixth pole position of the season on his final lap of the hour-long qualifying session, beating his own previous lap record by 0.6seconds.

The Italian overcame last-lap efforts by teammate Jorge Lorenzo, who was the only rider in the top ten to use the softer option front and rear for his fastest lap, and Repsol Honda's Dani Pedrosa who in turn each went fastest in a three-rider shootout in the closing seconds of the qualifying session. San Carlo Honda Gresini's Toni Elias also secured fourth position on his last lap, equalling his highest start of the season.

The three riders on the front row for tomorrow's race all set laptimes faster than the existing circuit lap record, and Elias was only 0.003seconds from doing so himself, indicating the intense pace at the end of the session.

The track conditions for the qualifying session for the San Marino Grand Prix at the Misano circuit were hot, although slightly cooler than during yesterday's practice session as the ambient temperature was six degrees Celsius cooler.

Tohru Ubukata - Manager, Bridgestone Motorcycle Tyre Development Department

It was an intense end to qualifying and the pace was very fast. What can you say about the session?

The ambient temperature today was cooler which meant the track temperature was a little lower, but again the hard compound front Bridgestone slick was the favoured option. As we are used to in qualifying sessions, most riders used the softer rear for their fastest laps, but Jorge used the softer front as well. The pace was fast and it was a good battle at the top of the timesheets, so we can expect a good race tomorrow.

What can you say about tyre performance during the qualifying session?

With the top three riders all faster than the existing lap record, set by Valentino last year, the laptimes show that the performance of both the softer and harder Bridgestone slicks was good today. Rider feedback was positive and some riders completed long runs with good consistency. Towards the end of the session we did see one of Valentino's hard compound rear tyres lose a small portion of tread, although I am confident it does not represent a durability concern. Tyre temperature this weekend is average and well within the operating range of both tyre compounds. Tyre wear is normal too, so this is not something that will affect tomorrow's race. Of course, we will take the rear tyre back to our technical centre in Japan to investigate in more detail.

-credit: bridgestone

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About this article
Series MotoGP
Drivers Valentino Rossi , Jorge Lorenzo , Dani Pedrosa