German Grand Prix: Stoner’s Sixth Pole

Cycle News Staff | July 16, 2011

Casey Stoner putting his Repsol Honda on pole position for tomorrow’s German Grand Prix at the Sachsenring probably won’t surprise many. Valentino Rossi qualifying his Marlboro Ducati 16th in a field of 17 is simply shocking.Stoner led his teammate Dani Pedrosa by .252 of a second in earning his sixth pole position of the season; the Australian also dipping under Pedrosa’s lap record from a year ago. Rossi led only Sylvain Guintoli, the Ducati World Superbike racer who is filling in for the still-injured Loris Capirossi, and ended the session 1.69 seconds slower than Stoner.Yamaha’s defending World Champion Jorge Lorenzo will join the two Repsol Hondas on the front row, the Spaniard putting in his best lap on the 33rd of his 33 laps. He ended up .263 of a second behind Stoner and just .011 off Pedrosa’s best.San Carlo Gresini Honda’s Marco Simoncelli will lead the second row of the grid for tomorrow’s Grand Prix, the Italian knocked off the front row for only the second time this year.

Simoncelli will be joined on the second row by Yamaha’s Ben Spies and the third Repsol Honda rider, Andrea Dovizioso. Spies lapped at a best of 1:22.056 – just .375 off pole position – as the top 13 riders circulated within a second of Stoner. With the top six split by less than half a second.Monster Yamaha Tech 3’s Colin Edwards will head the third row from countryman Nicky Hayden on the first of the Ducatis. Randy de Puniet on the Pramac Racing Ducati and Rizla Suzuki’s Alvaro Bautista will join him on row three.Mapfre Aspar Ducati’s Hector Barbera and Monster Yamaha Tech 3’s Cal Crutchlow, who suffered a crash in the final qualifying session, were the final riders on the same second as Stoner.Karel Abraham, Toni Elias and Hiroshi Aoyoma were next… and then came Rossi, the Italian struggling after crashing yesterday at high speed and bruising his elbow and shoulder. Guintoli was last and really struggling to re-adapt to MotoGP machinery. The Frenchman was 1.3 seconds slower than Rossi and over three seconds off Stoner’s mark.Final Qualifying

1.                  Casey Stoner (Honda) 1:21.681

2.                  Dani Pedrosa (Honda) 1:21.933

3.                  Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha) 1:21.944

4.                  Marco Simoncelli (Honda) 1:21.954

5.                  Ben Spies (Yamaha) 1:22.056

6.                  Andrea Dovizioso (Honda) 1:22.157

7.                  Colin Edwards (Yamaha) 1:22.368

8.                  Nicky Hayden (Ducati) 1:22.388

9.                  Randy de Puniet (Ducati) 1:22.503

10.                  Alvaro Bautista (Suzuki) 1:22.604
Check out this week’s issue of Cycle News for a preview of next weekend’s U.S. Grand Prix…