MotoGP Qatar: Jorge Lorenzo denies Cal Crutchlow pole

Jorge Lorenzo denied Cal Crutchlow a maiden MotoGP pole position with a stunning late lap in qualifying for the Qatar Grand Prix

MotoGP Qatar: Jorge Lorenzo denies Cal Crutchlow pole

Crutchlow hit the front midway through the 15-minute QP2 session that forms part of MotoGP's brand-new qualifying regulations, the Briton's 1m54.916s lap the fastest seen all weekend at Losail.

But world champion Lorenzo was in no mood to settle for second and pumped in a 1m54.714s lap with two minutes remaining, outqualifying the Tech 3 Yamaha man by 0.202 seconds.

Dani Pedrosa rescued third spot on the grid with a final-minute flyer. Prior to that, the session looked like being a bad one for Honda.

MotoGP's new qualifying system explained

Neither Pedrosa nor Marc Marquez looked like making the front row, and the pair narrowly missed a nasty accident when the rookie failed to notice his team-mate slowing-up through an ultra-fast left-hander with a few minutes to go.

Andrea Dovizioso was a revelation on his Ducati debut as he qualified fourth, while Stefan Bradl also impressed with fifth on his LCR Honda.

Marquez will start sixth for his MotoGP debut, one place ahead of Yamaha returnee Valentino Rossi.

Crutchlow's rookie team-mate, Bradley Smith, will start his first MotoGP race from ninth on the grid.

The big casualty of QP1 was Ben Spies. The Pramac Ducati rider failed to make it into the final session, not helped by a crash during final practice just minutes earlier.

The American, who is still recovering from a hefty shoulder injury, will start 13th, behind the best of the CRT riders.

That honour went to Aleix Espargaro, who made it into QP2 but had used up all his new front tyres in doing so and was unable to repeat his giant-killing antics.

Espargaro's Aspar Aprilia team-mate Randy de Puniet was the second-best CRT rider in 14th, one spot ahead of impressive debutant Lukas Pesek (Ioda Suter-BMW).

Brit Michael Laverty will start 23rd after running off-track on his final lap of QP2.

Pos  Rider             Team/Bike             Time       Gap
 1.  Jorge Lorenzo     Yamaha                1m54.714s
 2.  Cal Crutchlow     Tech 3 Yamaha         1m54.916s  + 0.202s
 3.  Dani Pedrosa      Honda                 1m55.151s  + 0.437s
 4.  Andrea Dovizioso  Ducati                1m55.160s  + 0.446s
 5.  Stefan Bradl      LCR Honda             1m55.477s  + 0.783s
 6.  Marc Marquez      Honda                 1m55.645s  + 0.931s
 7.  Valentino Rossi   Yamaha                1m55.711s  + 0.997s
 8.  Alvaro Bautista   Gresini Honda         1m55.870s  + 1.156s
 9.  Bradley Smith     Tech 3 Yamaha         1m56.315s  + 1.601s
10.  Andrea Iannone    Pramac Ducati         1m56.523s  + 1.809s
11.  Nicky Hayden      Ducati                1m56.667s  + 1.953s
12.  Aleix Espargaro   Aspar Aprilia         1m57.064s  + 2.350s
13.  Ben Spies         Pramac Ducati         1m57.440s  (QP1) 
14.  Randy de Puniet   Aspar Aprilia         1m57.551s  (QP1)
22.  Lukas Pesek       Ioda-Suter-BMW        1m57.926s  (QP1)
15.  Yonny Hernandez   PBM ART-Aprilia       1m58.058s  (QP1)
19.  Hiroshi Aoyama    Avintia FTR-Kawasaki  1m58.263s  (QP1)
18.  Karel Abraham     Cardion Aprilia       1m58.271s  (QP1)
17.  Colin Edwards     Forward FTR-Kawasaki  1m58.361s  (QP1)
20.  Danilo Petrucci   Ioda-Suter-BMW        1m58.486s  (QP1)
24.  Claudio Corti     Forward FTR-Kawasaki  1m58.755s  (QP1)
14.  Hector Barbera    Avintia FTR-Kawasaki  1m58.806s  (QP1)
21.  Bryan Staring     Gresini FTR-Honda     1m58.912s  (QP1)
23.  Michael Laverty   PBM-Aprilia           1m59.572s  (QP1)
shares
comments
Yamaha agrees to customer MotoGP engine lease in 2014
Previous article

Yamaha agrees to customer MotoGP engine lease in 2014

Next article

MotoGP Qatar: Marc Marquez unfazed by near-contact with team-mate

MotoGP Qatar: Marc Marquez unfazed by near-contact with team-mate
The signs Quartararo’s 2022 MotoGP title is slipping away from him Plus

The signs Quartararo’s 2022 MotoGP title is slipping away from him

Prior to the summer break, the 2022 MotoGP title looked like it was Fabio Quartararo’s to lose. But a crash at Assen and the consequential penalty he had to serve last weekend at Silverstone stopped him from capitalising on a main rival’s injury woes, while a resurgence from another, plus the rise of a former team-mate, look set to conspire against the Yamaha rider

MotoGP
Aug 8, 2022
Why Marquez’s toughest MotoGP foe is stopping at the right time Plus

Why Marquez’s toughest MotoGP foe is stopping at the right time

On the eve of the British Grand Prix, Andrea Dovizioso announced that he will be retiring from MotoGP after September’s San Marino GP. The timing of his departure raised eyebrows, but his reasoning remains sensible and what has happened this year should not diminish a hard-built legacy

MotoGP
Aug 6, 2022
Why a Suzuki refugee feels he deserves MotoGP's toughest challenge Plus

Why a Suzuki refugee feels he deserves MotoGP's toughest challenge

Alex Rins’ MotoGP future was plunged into sudden doubt when Suzuki elected to quit the series at the end of 2022. Securing a deal with Honda to join LCR, he will now tread a path that many have fallen off from. But it was a move he felt his status deserved, and it’s a challenge – he tells Autosport - he faces with his eyes wide open…

MotoGP
Jul 27, 2022
How Formula 1 has driven MotoGP's changing nature Plus

How Formula 1 has driven MotoGP's changing nature

The hiring of technicians from Formula 1 has clearly contributed to a recent change in the MotoGP landscape, with the role of engineers gaining greater significance relative to the riders. Here's how this shift has come about

MotoGP
Jul 19, 2022
The revolution behind Aprilia's rise from MotoGP tail-ender to pack-leader Plus

The revolution behind Aprilia's rise from MotoGP tail-ender to pack-leader

Coinciding with the arrival of Massimo Rivola as head of its MotoGP division, Aprilia has undergone an internal revolution that has spurred it from occupying last place in the team standings to leading the table in the space of just two years. Those entrenched in the project reveal how the ex-Ferrari F1 chief has achieved the dramatic turnaround

MotoGP
Jul 15, 2022
The battle Yamaha's wayward son is fighting to be fast again in MotoGP Plus

The battle Yamaha's wayward son is fighting to be fast again in MotoGP

Franco Morbidelli was long overdue a promotion to factory machinery when it finally came late last year, having finished runner-up in the 2020 standings on an old Yamaha package. But since then the Italian has been a shadow of his former self as he toils to adapt to the 2022 M1, and recognises that he needs to change his style to be quick on it

MotoGP
Jul 13, 2022
Why Honda and Yamaha have been left behind in MotoGP's new era Plus

Why Honda and Yamaha have been left behind in MotoGP's new era

The once all-conquering Japanese manufacturers are going through a difficult period in MotoGP this season. With Suzuki quitting, Honda struggling to get near the podium and Yamaha only enjoying success courtesy of Fabio Quartararo, Japanese manufacturers have been left in the dust by their European counterparts. Key paddock figures explain why.

MotoGP
Jun 28, 2022
Who is Valentino Rossi’s newest MotoGP star? Plus

Who is Valentino Rossi’s newest MotoGP star?

Valentino Rossi’s protégés stole the show at Assen as Francesco Bagnaia stormed to victory to arrest a recent barren run. But it was the rider in second, on Bagnaia’s old bike, who had all eyes on him. Securing his and the VR46 team’s first MotoGP podium, Marco Bezzecchi has all the characteristics that made his mentor special

MotoGP
Jun 27, 2022