Marc Marquez left himself and his MotoGP rivals breathless with a sensational pole position at the Circuit of the Americas. The world champion was forced to sprint the length of the pitlane with minutes remaining in Q2 after a failure on his Honda RC213V but showed remarkable composure to smash the lap record on his second machine moments later.
Everything looked to be following the formbook early in Q1 with Marquez taking provisional pole on a 2:02.803 but as he entered the pit straight to start his second run, the no.93 Repsol Honda ground to a halt with apparent gearbox problems. With no other option but to rest his machine against the pitwall, Marc leapt straight over the pitwall and embarked on a sprint towards his garage. On arrival, Marc’s second motorcycle was fired up and ready but the pre-session favourite needed to catch his breath and keep his cool as his rivals demoted him down the order.
Cal Crutchlow was the first to strike with two minutes remaining, the Briton setting a 2:02.613 on his LCR Honda but Jorge Lorenzo, having recovered from bronchitis, moved Yamaha to the top of the leaderboard with a new lap record. Ducati had been remarkably quiet through free practice but Andrea Dovizioso changed that in the final minute of Q2 with a 2:02.474 but Marquez had beaten the chequered flag and still had a chance.
Having now fallen to seventh, Marquez was under pressure to deliver but his team needn’t have worried as the 22 year old outpaced Dovizioso in all four sectors to set a 2:02.135, maintaining his unbeaten record in Austin. Ducati’s team leader will start second while Jorge Lorenzo will round out the front row, just ahead of teammate Valentino Rossi.
The championship leader will have two British riders for company on row two with Cal Crutchlow having been relegated to fifth, just ahead of the sensational Scott Redding, but Bradley Smith was left to rue electronic problems which left him with just one run to secure a grid position. The end result was tenth with Andrea Iannone, Aleix Espargaro and Pol Espargaro between himself and his compatriots.
2015 Red Bull Grand Prix of the Americas: Qualifying Classification
|1||93. Marc Marquez||Honda||Repsol Honda Team||2:02.135||Q2|
|2||4. Andrea Dovizioso||Ducati||Ducati Team||2:02.474||Q2|
|3||99. Jorge Lorenzo||Yamaha||Movistar Yamaha MotoGP||2:02.540||Q2|
|4||46. Valentino Rossi||Yamaha||Movistar Yamaha MotoGP||2:02.573||Q2|
|5||35. Cal Crutchlow||Honda||CWM LCR Honda||2:02.613||Q2|
|6||45. Scott Redding||Honda||Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS||2:02.674||Q2|
|7||29. Andrea Iannone||Ducati||Ducati Team||2:02.792||Q2|
|8||41. Aleix Espargaro||Suzuki||Team Suzuki Ecstar||2:02.869||Q2|
|9||44. Pol Espargaro||Yamaha||Monster Yamaha Tech 3||2:03.161||Q2|
|10||38. Bradley Smith||Yamaha||Monster Yamaha Tech 3||2:03.440||Q2|
|11||9. Danilo Petrucci||Ducati||Pramac Racing||2:03.741||Q2|
|12||25. Maverick Vinales||Suzuki||Team Suzuki Ecstar||2:03.754||Q2|
|13||8. Hector Barbera||Ducati||Avintia Racing||2:03.926||Q1|
|14||6. Stefan Bradl||Forward Yamaha||Athina Forward Racing||2:04.275||Q1|
|15||68. Yonny Hernandez||Ducati||Pramac Racing||2:04.313||Q1|
|16||63. Mike Di Meglio||Ducati||Avintia Racing||2:04.392||Q1|
|17||50. Eugene Laverty||Honda||Aspar MotoGP Team||2:04.875||Q1|
|18||7. Hiroshi Aoyama||Honda||Repsol Honda Team||2:05.086||Q1|
|19||43. Jack Miller||Honda||CWM LCR Honda||2:05.156||Q1|
|20||76. Loris Baz||Forward Yamaha||Athina Forward Racing||2:05.214||Q1|
|21||17. Karel Abraham||Honda||AB Motoracing||2:05.261||Q1|
|22||69. Nicky Hayden||Honda||Aspar MotoGP Team||2:05.569||Q1|
|23||19. Alvaro Bautista||Aprilia||Aprilia Racing Team Gresini||2:05.595||Q1|
|24||15. Alex de Angelis||ART||Octo IodaRacing Team||2:06.145||Q1|
|25||33. Marco Melandri||Aprilia||Aprilia Racing Team Gresini||2:07.267||Q1|