Ducati’s Andrea Dovizioso took his maiden pole of 2018 MotoGP season in Czech Republic GP at Brno, beating rival Yamaha’s Valentino Rossi and Honda’s Marc Marquez.
The first part of qualifying saw crashes of Pramac Ducati’s Jack Miller, Aprilia pair Scott Redding & Aleix Espargaro and Angel Nieto Ducati pair of Alvaro Bautista & Karel Abraham as Yamaha’s Maverick Vinales and Suzuki’s Alex Rins qualified for Q2.
Despite their crash, Bautista finished 14th with Miller in 17th, Abraham 23rd, Espargaro 24th and Redding 25th among the 26 riders for this weekend with Stefan Bradl riding for Honda in the third bike and Sylvain Guintoli riding the Suzuki.
In the second part though, Ducati’s Jorge Lorenzo took provisional pole, only to be beaten by Honda’s Marquez. However, in their late last laps, both Andrea Dovizioso and his compatriot Rossi showed stark improvements.
Both managed to beat Marquez with Dovizioso taking pole – his first since 2016 Malaysian GP and also a first pole for Ducati in a long time at Brno. Rossi completed an Italian 1-2, just falling short of Dovizioso’s time.
As a result, Marquez will start his 100th MotoGP race in third with Lorenzo demoted to the second row alongside LCR Honda’s Cal Crutchlow and Pramac Ducati’s Danilo Petrucci – the latter showed improvement as well but could only manage a sixth place.
Czech GP’s starting grid forms:
4 Lorenzo 5 Crutchlow 6 Petrucci
7 Zarco 8 Iannone 9 Rins
10 Pedrosa 11 Rabat 12 Vinales
13 Morbidelli 14 Bautista 15 Smith
16 Syahrin 17 Miller 18 Bradl
19 P.Espargaró 20 Nakagami 21 Guintoli
22 Luthi 23 Abraham 24 A.Espargaro
25 Redding 26 Simeon