Jerez MotoGP: Quartararo claims first pole of 2020

Fabio Quartararo smashed his own Jerez lap record to claim the first MotoGP pole of 2020 in a dramatic Spanish Grand Prix qualifying.

FP3 pacesetter Quartararo set the early pace with a 1m37.064s, which was immediately beaten by Marquez with a 1m37.006s.

The Petronas Yamaha rider dipped underneath the 1m37s barrier on his second flying lap to reclaim provisional pole with a 1m36.993s, while Pramac’s Francesco Bagnaia put his Ducati into third despite encountering a slower Valentino Rossi at the last corner.

Marquez returned to top spot with a. 1m36.877s on his first lap of his second run, though this was beaten by Maverick Vinales, who put in a blinding final sector to end up with a 1m36.844s.

With around a minute to go, Pramac’s Jack Miller was on a lap challenging for pole, but suffered a fast crash at Turn 11.

Just seconds later, Alex Rins crashed at the same place and had to be helped into the back of an ambulance as he held his wrist.

Amidst the drama, Quartararo produced a 1m36.705s to dip underneath the lap record he set in FP3 and secure his second-successive Jerez pole.

Vinales held onto second, with Marquez rounding out the front row ahead of Bagnaia – whose fourth-place is a career-best qualifying result.

Miller will start alongside despite his crash in fifth, with LCR Honda's Cal Crutchlow just 0.001s behind him in sixth.

Pol Espargaro came through Q1 alongside Rins and put his KTM seventh ahead of the factory Ducati of Andrea Dovizioso, who fell off at Turn 2 late on.

Rins was ninth, though his start now looks in doubt, while Franco Morbidelli (Petronas), Rossi and Joan Mir (Suzuki) completing the top 12.

Brad Binder briefly held the fastest time in Q1, and ultimately qualified an impressive 13th for his MotoGP debut on the KTM, having only missed a place in Q2 by just 0.138s.

The 2016 Moto3 world champion beat the works Ducati of Danilo Petrucci, with Takaaki Nakagami slotting into 15th on his year-old LCR Honda.

Aleix Espargaro was top Aprilia in 16th, while teammate Bradley Smith was 18th after suffering a highside crash at Turn 2 in the closing stages.

Johann Zarco also suffered a tumble late on, which stopped the Avintia Ducati rider advancing on his 20th position ahead of Honda rookie Alex Marquez and the Tech3 KTM of Iker Lecuona.

Spanish GP - Qualifying 2 results:

Cla # Rider Bike Time Gap
1 20 France Fabio Quartararo Yamaha 1'36.705  
2 12 Spain Maverick Viñales Yamaha 1'36.844 0.139
3 93 Spain Marc Marquez Honda 1'36.862 0.157
4 63 Italy Francesco Bagnaia Ducati 1'36.955 0.250
5 43 Australia Jack Miller Ducati 1'37.453 0.748
6 35 United Kingdom Cal Crutchlow Honda 1'37.454 0.749
7 44 Spain Pol Espargaro KTM 1'37.493 0.788
8 4 Italy Andrea Dovizioso Ducati 1'37.535 0.830
9 42 Spain Alex Rins Suzuki 1'37.636 0.931
10 21 Italy Franco Morbidelli Yamaha 1'37.674 0.969
11 46 Italy Valentino Rossi Yamaha 1'37.741 1.036
12 36 Spain Joan Mir Suzuki 1'37.784 1.079

Spanish GP - Q1 results:

Cla # Rider Bike Time Gap
1 42 Spain Alex Rins Suzuki 1'37.063  
2 44 Spain Pol Espargaro KTM 1'37.258 0.195
3 33 South Africa Brad Binder KTM 1'37.396 0.333
4 9 Italy Danilo Petrucci Ducati 1'37.423 0.360
5 30 Japan Takaaki Nakagami Honda 1'37.434 0.371
6 41 Spain Aleix Espargaro Aprilia 1'37.940 0.877
7 88 Portugal Miguel Oliveira KTM 1'37.964 0.901
8 38 United Kingdom Bradley Smith Aprilia 1'37.966 0.903
9 53 Spain Tito Rabat Ducati 1'38.029 0.966
10 5 France Johann Zarco Ducati 1'38.106 1.043
11 73 Spain Alex Marquez Honda 1'38.256 1.193
12 27 Spain Iker Lecuona KTM 1'38.512 1.449
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