Last year Ben Spies qualified fifth and finished fifth in the Grand Prix of Aragon in Spain. So far, he wouldn’t mind replicating that effort after earning provisional pole position for Sunday’s MotoGP in wet conditions today.
Spies lapped at a best of 2:00.219 (the lap record in the dry is held by Casey Stoner at 1:49.046) with full wets, besting Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa by .066 of a second in a session that saw all the top riders take to the track. In this morning’s mixed conditions, most of the top men elected not to take part.
“It was a good wet session so we’re happy with it; the bike feels good and we’re quick,” Spies said. “We got a good setting with the bike sorted and we got some new information with the electronics so we’ll see what happens tomorrow with the weather. As long as everything keeps going smoothly then that’s all we need!”
The provisional front row is filled by Spies’ Yamaha teammate Jorge Lorenzo, the Spaniard just over half a second off the Texan’s best.
Marlboro Ducati’s Nicky Hayden always does well in these conditions and today was no different as he put he Desmosedici fourth on the grid and just ahead of Monster Tech 3 Yamaha’s Andrea Dovizioso, the man who will be his teammate on the factory Ducati squad next season.
LCR Honda’s Stefan Bradl was sixth with Dovizioso’s teammate Cal Crutchlow seventh. Hayden’s teammate Valentino Rossi, Cardian AB Motoracing’s Karel Abraham and San Carlo Honda’s Alvaro Bautista rounded out the top 10.
Jonathan Rea, who is splitting his time between the World Superbike Series and MotoGP as the fill-in rider for the injured Stoner, ended up 11th in his first outing in the wet on the factory RC212V.
1. Ben Spies (Yamaha) 2:00.219
2. Dani Pedrosa (Honda) 2:00.285
3. Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha) 2:00.746
4. Nicky Hayden (Ducati) 2:00.996
5. Andrea Dovizioso (Yamaha) 2:01.379
6. Stefan Bradl (Honda) 2:01.626
7. Cal Crutchlow (Yamaha) 2:01.665)
8. Valentino Rossi (Ducati) 2:02.412
9. Karel Abraham (Ducati) 2:02.632
10. Alvaro Bautista (Honda) 2:03.263