US GP: Bridgestone qualifying report

Lorenzo blazes to pole in Laguna, faster than the lap record Jorge Lorenzo scored his fifth consecutive pole position start ahead of tomorrow's United States Grand Prix at Laguna Seca, setting a scorching time on the harder front...

Lorenzo blazes to pole in Laguna, faster than the lap record

Jorge Lorenzo scored his fifth consecutive pole position start ahead of tomorrow's United States Grand Prix at Laguna Seca, setting a scorching time on the harder front and softer rear Bridgestone slick tyres.

His pole position time was faster than last year's pole by almost 0.7seconds, thanks at least in part to the use of asymmetric rear slicks at Laguna Seca this year. It was also faster than the existing lap record by half a second, and only 0.27seconds slower than the outright qualifying lap record which was set in 2008 on super-sticky qualifying tyres.

Completing tomorrow's front row are Ducati Team's Casey Stoner, who also lapped faster than the existing lap record, and Repsol Honda rider Andrea Dovizioso who takes his first front row start of the season. The gap from third-placed Dovizioso to Valentino Rossi in sixth is less than 0.1seconds, promising a good battle between these two and Dani Pedrosa and Ben Spies who start from fourth and fifth respectively.

During the qualifying session the harder option front slick was favoured by all for its extra stability, although some riders tried the softer front, and the fastest times came using the softer option rear. Many riders completed more than race distance on the softer rear, indicating good race-distance durability and suggesting it will be the favoured race tyre tomorrow.

Tohru Ubukata - Manager, Bridgestone Motorcycle Tyre Development Department

"The laptimes at the front today were very fast and I believe the use of our asymmetric rear slicks this year contributed to this so I am pleased with the performance of our tyres. The ambient and track conditions were almost the same as last year's qualifying session but the top four were all faster than last year's pole time which is a good indicator of the improved performance here this season. The new asymmetric rears provide improved grip and warm-up performance compared to last year which gives the riders more confidence to attack. During the session many riders were able to confirm the softer option rear has sufficient race-distance durability so I believe this will be the favoured race tyre."

-source: bridgestone

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About this article
Series MotoGP
Drivers Valentino Rossi , Ben Spies , Andrea Dovizioso , Casey Stoner
Teams Ducati Team