Czech Republis MotoGP - Qualifying Results & Grid Positions

Marc Marquez is now equal with Mick Doohan’s all-time record for pole positions after turning in arguably one of the finest qualifying performances of his career when a bold gamble to fit slicks before his rivals saw him take the top spot in a damp Brno by a mammoth 2.5secs.

Following Friday’s dry sessions, Saturday gave way to rainy conditions in the Czech Republic, creating a few headaches in terms of strategy. Indeed, with a dry line only just appearing as the riders fired up for Q2, the session was always destined to favour the brave.

Indeed, with a championship lead to protect, it was somewhat surprising to see Marquez take the risk before anyone else, the Spaniard taking off on slicks with five minutes of the session remaining, giving him time enough to build his momentum.

And so it proved, Marquez falling short with his first effort but punching in two rapid lap times thereafter to go a mammoth 2.5s up on his moe cautious rivals. It was a fittingly accomplished manner in which to go level with Doohan on the leaderboard for pole positions, the pair having claimed 58 Saturday 'wins' each.

Indeed, Jack Miller was the only other rider foolhardy enough to mirror Marquez’s strategy and he was rewarded with second on the grid aboard the Pramac Ducati, even if his afternoon ended in the gravel trap with a slip off on his final flyer.

Making his first appearance in Q2 this season – the first time he has cracked the latter-half of qualifying since joining KTM – Johann Zarco went on to double up his achievements with an excellent run to third on the grid.

Going against the recent trend of form by grabbing KTM’s first-ever MotoGP pole position, the Austrian manufacturer’s joy was consolidated further by Pol Espargaro following him up in fifth position, the team-mates having seemingly benefitted from the ‘warm up’ of having to progress via Q1.

Ducati’s title contender Andrea Dovizioso splits the RC16s in fourth position, with Alex Rins the sole Suzuki Q2 representative in sixth position.

Though ‘only’ seventh, Valentino Rossi was nonetheless the best-placed of the four Yamahas that made it through to Q2, ahead of Mugello winner Danilo Petrucci and factory counterpart Maverick Vinales.

Quickest in FP2, Fabio Quartararo could only manage tenth in the inclement conditions, ahead of Cal Crutchlow in 11th and Franco Morbidelli rounding out row four in 12th.

 

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