Jerez MotoGP: Crutchlow breaks lap record to take pole

LCR Honda rider Cal Crutchlow broke MotoGP's Jerez track record to take pole position for the Spanish Grand Prix.

Crutchlow was fastest by 0.259s in an otherwise ultra-close session, where second and ninth was separated by 0.130s.

Ending his first run after just one lap, Crutchlow quickly jumped on his second bike and completed his second run during the mid-session pitstops.

He took the lead with 1m37.752 at that time, demoting factory Honda rider Marc Marquez from the lead.

While that time was not beaten for the rest of the session, Crutchlow improved again after the chequered flag fell to take his fourth MotoGP pole position with a 1m37.653s.

Fellow Honda rider Dani Pedrosa and Johann Zarco jumped into second and third with their late flyers to share the front row with Crutchlow.

Jorge Lorenzo settled for fourth, with Marquez only taking fifth.

The Spaniard was the early pace-setter in the session and, despite going fastest in the first two sectors of the track on three occasions, he failed to improve every time.

Marquez beat Suzuki duo Alex Rins and Andrea Iannone by seven and 10 thousandths of a second.

The Ducati GP18s of Andrea Dovizioso and Danilo Petrucci took eighth and ninth respectively despite both being less than half a second off the pace.

It was a disappointing qualifying for Yamaha factory duo Valentino Rossi and Maverick Vinales as they were 10th and 11th, only managing to beat Pramac Ducati's Jack Miller.

Q1: Dovizioso easily first, Vinales narrowly second

Dovizioso and Vinales, the two biggest names taking part in Q1, had successfully advanced to the second part of qualifying after missing out on an automatic spot in FP3.

The factory Ducati rider set a time of 1m38.402s on the only flyer of his first run, something the rest of the field couldn't match before the mid-session pitstops.

Dovizioso was the first one to rejoin the track for his second run, and again only did one lap, his 1m38.074s enough to secure first place.

Fellow Ducati rider Tito Rabat was second, 0.002s ahead of Vinales, after the first runs, but the latter edged three tenths ahead after the pitstops.

Rabat then crashed at Turn 1 shortly after his flyer and Aleix Espargaro took his place as Vinales' main challenger for the Q2 spot.

However, a last-second effort from the Aprilia rider fell 0.040s short.

Behind Espargaro, Honda rookies Takaaki Nakagami (LCR) and Franco Morbidelli (Marc VDS) will start 14th and 15th with Pol Espargaro leading KTM's efforts in 16th.

Rabat had to settle for 17th.

Q2 results

Cla#RiderBikeLapsTimeGap
1 35 united_kingdom Cal Crutchlow Honda 8 1'37.653  
2 26 spain Dani Pedrosa Honda 8 1'37.912 0.259
3 5 france Johann Zarco Yamaha 8 1'37.956 0.303
4 99 spain Jorge Lorenzo Ducati 8 1'37.969 0.316
5 93 spain Marc Marquez Honda 8 1'37.977 0.324
6 42 spain Alex Rins Suzuki 8 1'37.984 0.331
7 29 italy Andrea Iannone Suzuki 8 1'37.987 0.334
8 4 italy Andrea Dovizioso Ducati 7 1'38.029 0.376
9 9 italy Danilo Petrucci Ducati 8 1'38.086 0.433
10 46 italy Valentino Rossi Yamaha 8 1'38.267 0.614
11 25 spain Maverick Viñales Yamaha 8 1'38.281 0.628
12 43 australia Jack Miller Ducati 8 1'38.522 0.869

Q1 results

Cla#RiderBikeLapsTimeGap
Q2 4 italy Andrea Dovizioso Ducati 5 1'38.074  
Q2 25 spain Maverick Viñales Yamaha 8 1'38.349 0.275
13 41 spain Aleix Espargaro Aprilia 8 1'38.389 0.315
14 30 japan Takaaki Nakagami Honda 8 1'38.481 0.407
15 21 italy Franco Morbidelli Honda 8 1'38.544 0.470
16 44 spain Pol Espargaro KTM 8 1'38.598 0.524
17 53 spain Tito Rabat Ducati 7 1'38.610 0.536
18 12 switzerland Thomas Luthi Honda 8 1'38.752 0.678
19 36 finland Mika Kallio KTM 8 1'38.759 0.685
20 19 spain Alvaro Bautista Ducati 8 1'38.838 0.764
21 38 united_kingdom Bradley Smith KTM 8 1'38.961 0.887
22 55 malaysia Hafizh Syahrin Yamaha 8 1'39.135 1.061
23 17 czech_republic Karel Abraham Ducati 7 1'39.146 1.072
24 10 belgium Xavier Simeon Ducati 8 1'39.708 1.634
25 45 united_kingdom Scott Redding Aprilia 6 1'39.918 1.844

 

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About this article
Series MotoGP
Event Spanish GP
Sub-event Saturday qualifying
Track Circuito de Jerez
Drivers Cal Crutchlow
Teams Team LCR
Article type Qualifying report