Pedrosa takes final pole of the year in qualifying for Valencia GP

Pedrosa takes final pole of the year in qualifying for Valencia GP

Dani Pedrosa gave himself the best possible chance of another race win tomorrow after taking pole position for the GP Generali de la Comunitat Valenciana in Spain today and the Spaniard was followed by newly crowned MotoGP champion Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha Factory Racing) and his Repsol Honda teammate Casey Stoner in third.

It was almost a perfect lap and I gave 100%. I'm very happy with the pole position.

Dani Pedrosa

Pedrosa and Lorenzo swapped the top position a number of times during the session but nearing the end of the hour Pedrosa was the one with a little extra and eventually set a best lap 1m 30.844s and with it breaking the circuit record previously set by Valentino Rossi (Ducati Racing). Lorenzo recorded a best lap of 1m 31.195s while Stoner finished the session with a lap time of 1m 31.428s.

Fourth place was secured by Cal Crutchlow for the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 team with a best lap of 1m 31.512s with Stefan Bradl in 5th for the LCR Honda team 1m 31.757s and Crutchlow’s teammate Andrea Dovizioso finished with a 6th place start tomorrow (1m31.795s). Ducati Racing’s Nicky Hayden will start from 7th tomorrow with a best lap of 1m 32.503s while Alvaro Bautista secured an 8th place start for the San Carlo Honda Gresini team 1m 32.585s and the last place on the third row went to Hector Barbera (Pramac Racing) with a 1m 32.605s lap.

Starting from 10th tomorrow will be Aleix Espargaro on board the Power Electronics Aspar CRT machine with a best lap of 1m 32.834s and he starts ahead of Valentino Rossi who couldn’t lap faster than 1m 32.877s. Espargaro’s teammate Randy De Puniet set the 12th fastest time of 1m 33.346s while starting from 13th will be Cardion AB Motoracing’s Karel Abraham (1m 33.442s). Colin Edwards starts from 14th for the NGM Forward Racing team with a best lap of 1m 33.453s with Michele Pirro in starts from 15th for the San Carlo Honda Gresini CRT effort with a lap time of 1m 33.971s while Katsuyuki Nakasuga, who campaigning the last race of 2012 for the Yamaha Factory Racing team (1m 33.979s).

Jorge Lorenzo, Yamaha Factory Racing
Jorge Lorenzo, Yamaha Factory Racing

Photo by: Yamaha MotoGP

Danilo Petrucci starts from 17th for the Came IodaRacing team with a 1m 33.980s lap while Ivan Silva set the 18th fastest time with a 1m 34.407s lap for the Avintia Blusens team. Roberto Rolfo (Speed Master) starts from 19th with a best time of 1m 34.866s while James Ellison starts from 20th for the Paul Bird Motorsport team (1m 34.918s). Hiroshi Aoyama starts from 21st for the Avintia Blusens team with a best lap of 1m 35.363s while starting from 22nd will be Claudio Corti for the Avintia Blusens team with a best time of 1m 36.531s.

Pedrosa was very happy with his fastest lap saying, “It was almost a perfect lap and I gave 100% because I knew I wouldn't be able to improve any more as the tyres were very good for the first lap and then the drop in grip was quite severe. I'm very happy with the pole position and the new record because Valentino's old record was done with qualifying tyres. We had only one dry session to test the new asphalt and we saw that the grip level is a little better but the tyres dropped down very quick.

We still have to decide on the tyres for tomorrow because we have used only the soft compound, but it depends on the weather - if it rains we will need to take what we learned yesterday. I really would like to win here and finish the season with a good race,” Pedrosa added.

Lorenzo didn’t hold back in his quest for another pole position but conceded to Pedrosa’s superior speed today. He said, “It seems like it’s going to be very close tomorrow. Dani is very strong here, not only in the dry but also in the wet and it seems it could be wet for the race. I tried my best for pole position with the last rear tyre but I didn’t expect the lap time from Dani. Anyway, second place is good and the important thing is the race. Maybe the story will be different tomorrow.”

Casey Stoner, Repsol Honda Team
Casey Stoner, Repsol Honda Team

Photo by: Repsol Media

Stoner wasn’t happy with his last ever qualifying session. He said, “Qualifying didn't really go to plan, it was a pretty frustrating session. Due to the miserable weather this weekend, we had a lot of work to do in a very short space of time, we did make some good progress but unfortunately we couldn't find enough before the end of the session. There is a new surface here and we expected everything to be really good and smooth but in fact we've found there are a lot of bumps on the circuit.

Now I'm thinking how we can improve the bike and get everything working a little easier. We need to adapt the electronics to allow me to be less restricted on this track so I can ride how I want to. Hopefully the weather is dry tomorrow and we can take that extra step in warm up,” Stoner added.

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