MotoGP > MotoGP 2008 Round 02: Spanish GP > Qualifying
MotoGPSpainMarch 29, 2008
MotoGP World Championship Grand Prix Round 02
Spanish Grand Prix at Jerez

Dani Second Fastest as Hayden Heads Row Two

Race Results >>

This all-important first qualifying session on a European track belonged to new talent Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha) who took pole ahead of fellow Spaniard Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda RC212V) and Colin Edwards (Yamaha) who was third fastest.



Dani PEDROSA (Repsol Honda Team)


Nicky HAYDEN (Repsol Honda Team)

Lorenzo, who has now notched his second consecutive pole in his rookie MotoGP season, headed the timesheet twenty minutes into the hour of final qualifying - and then was never headed.

Randy de Puniet (LCR Honda RC212V) lay second fastest early in the session and the Frenchman was the quickest Honda rider, ahead of Dani, who took pole here in 2007, and who lay fourth as the last fifteen minutes remained and riders opted for sticky qualifying rubber.

As Lorenzo upped his pace even further, bettering his 1m 38.964s time with a lap of 1m 38.733, Dani too shaved his lap time but remained fourth in the order. Andrea Dovizioso (JiR Scot Honda RC212V) held seventh and Nicky Hayden (Repsol Honda RC212V) ninth.

Reigning World Champion Casey Stoner (Ducati) was not having an easy time here at Jerez. With twelve minutes left he managed seventh fastest time - and that was where he was destined to end up.

A former World Champion in the shape of Valentino Rossi (Yamaha) was another man who had to make the best of this session with fifth on the grid as he ran into mechanical difficulties late on.

With ten minutes of the hour left Colin Edwards (Yamaha) had put himself of the front row as second fastest ahead of the tenacious de Puniet. But Lorenzo simply found ever more speed to drop his time to 1m 38.689s.

But Dani the responded to Lorenzo’s onslaught with a lap time just 0.15s slower than the Yamaha man’s to go second fastest. Hayden too made inroads to the front with a 1m 39.061s time that hoisted him to fourth.

The order was thus Lorenzo, Pedrosa and Edwards on the front row, then Hayden Rossi and de Puniet on the second row with Stoner, James Toseland (Yamaha) and John Hopkins (Suzuki) on row three.

This is how the grid would stay, but not before Lorenzo had gone faster still. He pulled a 1m 38.189s time out with two minutes to go and even though Dani responded again to Lorenzo’s threat he was still 0.6 seconds shy of the pole marker.

Alex de Angelis (San Carlo Honda Gresini RC212V) crashed with one minute to go and ended the session 14th, one place behind Dovizioso who finished up 13th. Shinya Nakano (San Carlo Honda Gresini RC212V) mustered an 11th place start.

Dani, second quickest, and 0.6 seconds shy of the pole time, said: “I’m happy with today’s result. We’ve made a big improvement to our performance on qualifying tyres and I didn’t really expect to be as high as second, but I’m happy because this is a tight track, so it’s particularly important to start from the front row. We haven’t yet made our final decision on race tyres but the situation is quite clear for us, so everything is fine. Tomorrow the atmosphere at Jerez will be fantastic, with maybe more than 130,000 fans watching. We’ll just try and get a good start and make the most of that.”

Dani’s team-mate Nicky Hayden, fourth fastest, said: “We’ve made a bit of progress, but this afternoon a lot of guys went quicker and we didn’t quite have the feeling I was looking for to get the rhythm I need. I wasn’t thrilled with my lap, I felt the bike had a bit more potential. I used a different front tyre than I’ve used in the past and maybe in these hot conditions it wasn’t ideal. The Michelin rear qualifier was really good today and definitely had more in it, so big thanks to Michelin. I'm looking forward to the race. Jerez is always an unbelievable experience and I’m sure tomorrow's going to be no different.”

De Puniet starts from sixth on the grid. The Frenchman said: “I’m quite happy about this result. The small adjustments we made in this morning’s free session gave me the chance to go faster and the feeling with the bike on race tyres is quite impressive. We solved our rear traction problems working on engine-mapping and chassis set-up and the pace on race tyres improved by four tenths compared with yesterday’s performance. Anyway the second row was our target and we are pretty confident for tomorrows race.”

Nakano qualified 11th and said: “The feeling with the bike improved a lot in qualifying and in morning practice compared to yesterday. That allowed me to push hard from the start. I’m satisfied because we knew it was going to be tough to get on the third or fourth row but with the fourth qualifying tyre I pushed hard and managed to seal 11th place. I know we’re still some way off the front but I know I can at least run with the second group and that’s my objective tomorrow.”

Dovi managed 13th place on the grid and said: “Things are very positive as we are in good shape in race trim and we’ve found the right Michelin tyre that allows me to keep a good, consistent pace. We need to work a little bit more on corner entrance speed but I think we can make a good race. I want to make a good start and try and gain some positions and not lose contact with the leaders, that’s my aim early on. It won’t be easy, but in any case I have a chance to do well thanks to our good race set-up. Jerez is a difficult circuit to overtake on, which is why my strategy must be to attack all the time.”

For de Angelis, 14th place on the grid will have to do. He said: “I’m really disappointed to have crashed on the last lap of qualifying. I was improving on my best time and would have definitely moved up the grid for a Grand Prix where the starting position is really important. We have to study the data and find out why the front is sliding, even though the general feeling is good. We have to look at the cycle parts and find out the problem.”

250cc

Alvaro Bautista (Aprilia) took pole in front of his home crowd here when he dislodged Mika Kallio (KTM) from the head of the grid with a 1m 43.071s time. Alex Debon and Thomas Luthi (both Aprilia) complete the front row in third and fourth spots.

Yuki Takahashi (JiR Scot Honda RS250RW) managed 11th fastest for a third row start while Ratthapark Wilairot (Stop And Go Racing RS250RW) qualified 19th.

Takahashi said: “The feeling with the bike is much better today. We had left the bike in the same set-up as Qatar but here it was very hard on tyres, they only performed for five or six laps before sliding. With new steering geometry and some adjustments to the suspension I then had a very good feeling. I set my time running alone and on race tyres so I’m quite happy with qualifying. I need a good start in the race to catch the lead group - if I do that I have a chance of the podium.”

Wilairot said: “I’m not very happy with myself. The bike is much better than last year but my lap times are the same as in 2007. For some reason I cannot find the confidence I need to go faster. I just cannot find a fast and consistent rhythm. But if I get a good start in the race I’m sure I can run with the group just ahead of me on the grid.”

125cc

In the junior class Britain’s Bradley Smith claimed his second consecutive pole of the season ahead of Nicolas Terol, Stefan Bradl and reigning World Champion Gabor Talmacsi (all Aprilia). Louis Rossi (FFM Racing Honda RS125R), Honda’s sole full-time representative in the class, managed 34th on the grid in only his second Grand Prix start of his first full season.

Rossi said: “Yesterday I was still in a technical jam and was unable to ride faster. Today, I feel I’ve moved forward. I did some positive work on corner entries and I know I need to improve on acceleration. The more you move forward, the more you focus on specific aspects on which to work. I’m starting to have a good feeling. I followed Mike di Meglio for one lap and could see how he was on the brakes - and it was very interesting.”



Randy DE PUNIET (LCR Honda MotoGP)


Shinya Nakano (San Carlo Gresini Honda)

MotoGP:

Dani Pedrosa, Repsol Honda: 2nd.
“I’m happy with today’s result. We’ve made a big improvement to our performance on qualifying tyres and I didn’t really expect to be as high as second, but I’m happy because this is a tight track, so it’s particularly important to start from the front row. We haven’t yet made our final decision on race tyres but the situation is quite clear for us, so everything is fine. Tomorrow the atmosphere at Jerez will be fantastic, with maybe more than 130,000 fans watching. We’ll just try and get a good start and make the most of that.”

Nicky Hayden, Repsol Honda: 4th.
“We’ve made a bit of progress, but this afternoon a lot of guys went quicker and we didn’t quite have the feeling I was looking for to get the rhythm I need. I wasn’t thrilled with my lap, I felt the bike had a bit more potential. I used a different front tyre than I’ve used in the past and maybe in these hot conditions it wasn’t ideal. The Michelin rear qualifier was really good today and definitely had more in it, so big thanks to Michelin. I'm looking forward to the race. Jerez is always an unbelievable experience and I’m sure tomorrow's going to be no different.”

Randy De Puniet, LCR Honda: 6th.
“I’m quite happy about this result. The small adjustments we made in this morning’s free session gave me the chance to go faster and the feeling with the bike on race tyres is quite impressive. We solved our rear traction problems working on engine-mapping and chassis set-up and the pace on race tyres improved by four tenths compared with yesterday’s performance. Anyway the second row was our target and we are pretty confident for tomorrows race.”

Shinya Nakano, San Carlo Gresini Honda: 11th.
“The feeling with the bike improved a lot in qualifying and in morning practice compared to yesterday. That allowed me to push hard from the start. I’m satisfied because we knew it was going to be tough to get on the third or fourth row but with the fourth qualifying tyre I pushed hard and managed to seal 11th place. I know we’re still some way off the front but I know I can at least run with the second group and that’s my objective tomorrow.”

Andrea Dovizioso, JiR Scot Honda: 13th.
“Things are very positive as we are in good shape in race trim and we’ve found the right Michelin tyre that allows me to keep a good, consistent pace. We need to work a little bit more on corner entrance speed but I think we can make a good race. I want to make a good start and try and gain some positions and not lose contact with the leaders, that’s my aim early on. It won’t be easy, but in any case I have a chance to do well thanks to our good race set-up. Jerez is a difficult circuit to overtake on, which is why my strategy must be to attack all the time.”

Alex De Angelis, San Carlo Gresini Honda: 14th.
“I’m really disappointed to have crashed on the last lap of qualifying. I was improving on my best time and would have definitely moved up the grid for a Grand Prix where the starting position is really important. We have to study the data and find out why the front is sliding, even though the general feeling is good. We have to look at the cycle parts and find out the problem.”

250cc:

Yukio Takahashi, JiR Scot Honda: 11th.
“The feeling with the bike is much better today. We had left the bike in the same set-up as Qatar but here it was very hard on tyres, they only performed for five or six laps before sliding. With new steering geometry and some adjustments to the suspension I then had a very good feeling. I set my time running alone and on race tyres so I’m quite happy with qualifying. I need a good start in the race to catch the lead group - if I do that I have a chance of the podium.”

Ratthapark Wilairot, Thai Honda PTT SAG: 19th.
“I am not very happy with myself at Jerez. The bike is much better than last year but my lap times are the same as in 2007. For some reason I cannot find the confidence I need to go faster. I just cannot find a good fast and consistent rhythm. But if I get a good start in the race I’m sure I can run with the group just ahead of me on the grid.”

125cc.

Louis Rossi, FFM Honda: 34th.
“Yesterday I was still in a technical jam and was unable to ride faster. Today, I feel I’ve moved forward. I did some positive work on corner entries and I know I need to improve on acceleration. The more you move forward, the more you focus on specific aspects on which to work. I’m starting to have a good feeling. I followed Mike di Meglio for
one lap and could see how he was on the brakes - and it was very interesting.”


MotoGP World Championship Grand Prix Round 02
Spanish Grand Prix at Jerez

line
MotoGP
1 Jorge LORENZO (Fiat Yamaha Team)
2 Dani PEDROSA (Repsol Honda Team)
3 Colin EDWARDS (Tech 3 Yamaha)
4 Nicky HAYDEN (Repsol Honda Team)
5 Valentino ROSSI (Fiat Yamaha Team)
6 Randy DE PUNIET (LCR Honda MotoGP)
7 Casey STONER (Ducati Marlboro Team)
8 James TOSELAND (Tech 3 Yamaha)
9 John HOPKINS (Kawasaki Racing Team)
10 Loris CAPIROSSI (Rizla Suzuki MotoGP)
11 Shinya NAKANO (San Carlo Honda Gresini)
12 Chris VERMEULEN (Rizla Suzuki MotoGP)
13 Andrea DOVIZIOSO (JiR Team Scot MotoGP)
14 Alex DE ANGELIS (San Carlo Honda Gresini)
15 Anthony WEST (Kawasaki Racing Team)
16 Toni ELIAS (Alice Team)
17 Sylvain GUINTOLI (Alice Team)
18 Marco MELANDRI (Ducati Marlboro Team)
 
250cc
1 Alvaro BAUTISTA (Mapfre Aspar Team)
2 Mika KALLIO (Red Bull KTM 250)
3 Alex DEBON (Lotus Aprilia)
4 Thomas LUTHI (Emmi - Caffe Latte )
5 Julian SIMON (Repsol KTM 250cc)
6 Hiroshi AOYAMA (Red Bull KTM 250)
7 Hector BARBERA (Team Toth Aprilia)
8 Roberto LOCATELLI (Metis Gilera)
9 Marco SIMONCELLI (Metis Gilera)
10 Mattia PASINI (Polaris World)
11 Yuki TAKAHASHI (JiR Team Scot 250)
19 Ratthapark WILAIROT (Thai Honda PTT SAG)
 
125cc
1 Bradley SMITH (Polaris World)
2 Nicolas TEROL (Jack & Jones WRB)
3 Stefan BRADL (Grizzly Gas Kiefer Racing)
4 Gabor TALMACSI (Bancaja Aspar Team)
5 Simone CORSI (Jack & Jones WRB)
6 Stevie BONSEY (Degraaf Grand Prix)
7 Mike DI MEGLIO (Ajo Motorsport)
8 Scott REDDING (Blusens Aprilia Junior)
9 Danny WEBB (Degraaf Grand Prix)
10 Raffaele DE ROSA (Onde 2000 KTM)
 

< MotoGP
Related Links

· Honda Worldwide | MotoGP - FIM Road Racing World Championship Grand Prix
· Spain


Page Top

Honda Worldwide site

Home | Site Map | Site Index | About this Site

Copyright, Honda Motor Co., Ltd. and its subsidiaries and affiliates. All Rights Reserved.