Dani Pedrosa scored his first pole position of the 2013 season, and 25th of his Grand Prix career, with a record-breaking final qualifying lap at Mugello. The Repsol Honda rider broke the standing lap record at the Italian circuit, stealing pole with his final lap of 1’47.157. Pedrosa is joined on the front row by defending MotoGP
champion Jorge Lorenzo, who had himself broken the lap record and looked secure for pole position before Pedrosa’s success. Ducati’s Andrea Dovizioso surprised on the final lap as well, with the Italian giving the home crowd a boost with a third-place grid position.
Dani Pedrosa secured his first pole position of the 2013 season with a record-breaking final qualifying lap at Mugello.
“Qualifying was difficult, because we were behind for a large part of the session,” said Pedrosa in a Repsol team press release, “but we managed a great last lap and took pole. Now we have some ideas to improve the bike for tomorrow and hope to have a strong race.”
The frenetic 15-minute Qualifying 2 session saw a number of riders running a front-row pace in the closing minutes before Pedrosa and Dovizioso shook things up on the final lap. Factory Yamaha’s Valentino Rossi and Ducati’s Nicky Hayden, were both running in the front row, as were Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez and Tech 3 Yamaha’s Cal Crutchlow. But the leaders dropped their times into record-breaking paces in the closing laps.
Crutchlow returned from a mid-session low-side on his backup Yamaha M1. The British rider managed to get his name into the front row, momentarily, before dropping to fourth. Stefan Bradl, like Dovizioso and Pedrosa, made great gains on the final Q2 lap to bolt into fifth. The German bested MotoGP rookie Marquez, who was also a Row 1 contender before getting shuffled back to sixth. Marquez was lucky to be in the front at all, considering his three practice session crashes and advancing into the Q2 session only after the HRC pilot had contested the opening Q1 session.
Rossi suffered most from the final lap pushes, as the nine-time world champ fell to seventh. The Doctor couldn’t maintain his front-row position, with the home crowd having to cheer on their champion from the front of Row 3. Rossi was followed by former Ducati teammate, Hayden, with Gresini Honda’s Alvaro Bautista rounding out Row 3.
Michele Pirro leads Row 4, followed by Tech 3’s MotoGP rookie, Bradley Smith.
2013 MotoGP Mugello Qualifying Results:
1. Dani Pedrosa (Honda) 1'47.157
2. Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha) 1'47.226
3. Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati) 1'47.628
4. Cal Crutchlow (Yamaha) 1'47.632
5. Stefan Bradl (Honda) 1'47.737
6. Marc Marquez (Honda) 1'47.763
7. Valentino Rossi (Yamaha) 1'47.872
8. Nicky Hayden (Ducati) 1'48.006
9. Alvaro Bautista (Honda) 1'48.355
10. Michele Pirro (Ducati) 1'48.564
11. Bradley Smith (Yamaha) 1'48.706
12. Aleix Espargaro (Aspar) 1'48.765
13. Andrea Iannone (Ducati) 1'49.265
14. Randy De Puniet (Aspar) 1'49.266
15. Hector Barbera (Avintia Blusens) 1'49.847
16. Danilo Petrucci (Iodaracing) 1'50.518
17. Colin Edwards (Forward Racing) 1'50.701
18. Claudio Corti (Forward Racing) 1'50.729
19. Michael Laverty (Paul Bird Motorsport) 1'50.787
20. Karel Abraham (Cardion AB) 1'51.089
21. Yonny Hernandez (Paul Bird Motorsport) 1'51.239
22. Bryan Staring (Honda Gresini) 1'51.981
23. Hiroshi Aoyama (Avintia Blusens) 1'52.148
24. Lukas Pesek (IodaRacing) 1'52.345