Tadayuki Okada ' the way for the Repsol YPF Honda team. The Japanese rider qualified ninth and was the only member of the team to get inside the top ten. Sete Gibernau managed to cut nearly a full second off his Friday time but still ended up in 11th place on the grid while his compatriot Alex Crivilli will start tomorrow's Pacific Grand Prix from the 12th position.
- 9th - 1'51.159
"Right now, I reckon my bike is at about 80% of where it needs to be in terms of set-up. It feels much better than yesterday though and that's good. We had a little problem using the qualifying tyres so I set my fastest time on racing rubber. We'll continue trying to fine-tune the bike tomorrow morning, during the warm-up, but I think we're already pretty much ready for the race. And you never know, we might be ready to try to winJ"
- 11th - 1'51.221
"We managed to find a few things which helped improve the bike at the end of the session but there's still some work for us to do. Tomorrow, in the warm-up, we will have to work on the gearbox because there are still several places on the track where I'm having problems. I have to find a way to improve my pace. I need to drop my times by about two or three tenths at least if I want to be able to race with the front guys tomorrow. I'll try to get a good start and run as good a race as I did here last year".
- 12th - 1'51.240
"We spent the whole session changing various things on the bike but it didn't produce the results we wanted. I'm not happy with my position on the grid, but all the times are so close it's incredible. With the time I did, I should have been on the second row but instead I'm sitting on row three. That is going to make my race pretty hard tomorrow. I will need a really good start if I'm to have any chance of riding a good race".
<pre> Starting grid - Twin Ring Motegi - 500cc 1 M. Biaggi Marlboro Yamaha Team Yamaha 1'49.954 2 K. Roberts Telefsnica Movistar Suzuki Suzuki 1'50.140 3 L. Capirossi Emerson Honda Pons Honda 1'50.286 4 A. Barros Emerson Honda Pons Honda 1'50.515 5 V. Rossi Nastro Azzurro Honda Honda 1'50.797 6 N. Abe Antena 3 Yamaha-d'Antmn Yamaha 1'50.926 7 C. Checa Marlboro Yamaha Team Yamaha 1'51.020 8 G. McCoy Red Bull Yamaha WCM Yamaha 1'51.070 9 T. Okada Repsol YPF Honda Team Honda 1'51.159 10 N. Aoki Telefsnica Movistar Suzuki Suzuki 1'51.177 11 S. Gibernau Repsol YPF Honda Team Honda 1'51.221 12 A. Crivilli Repsol YPF Honda Team Honda 1'51.240 13 R. Laconi Red Bull Yamaha WCM Yamaha 1'51.259 14 J. McWilliams Blu Aprilia Team Aprilia 1'51.823 15 J. Vd.Goorbergh Rizla Honda TSR-Honda 1'52.048