Marquez Beats the Yamahas to Pole Despite Crash

Marc Marquez kept up his 100% pole position record in Argentina despite a heavy crash in qualifying at Termas de Rio Hondo. The Spaniard was the dominant force throughout free practice and despite his late slip-up in Q2, Marquez had enough in hand to see off Yamaha duo Valentino Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo.

Many of the day’s headlines were actually made in FP4 as Scott Redding’s Pramac Ducati suffered what appeared to be a rear tyre delamination, bringing out the red flag. The debris was cleared and the session quickly resumed but a second red flag later on due to “safety conditions” seemed to confirm fears that Michelin were uncertain over the safety of their rubber.

Following the qualifying session, Michelin chose to withdraw both the medium and hard compound rear slicks, replacing them with an extra medium compound tyre with a stiffer construction. To enable the riders to assess the new tyre option, an extra 30-minute practice session will take place on Sunday morning in addition to the scheduled warm-up.

The concerns over tyre safety didn’t affect Q2 but a severe bump at turn one did, catching out Marc Marquez, Cal Crutchlow and Bradley Smith. Fortunately for Marquez, his tumble came after setting a 1:39.411 which proved comfortably good enough for pole, while a head-to-head in the dying seconds between Rossi and Lorenzo went the Italian’s way, enabling him to claim second on the grid.

Dani Pedrosa will head row two ahead of the factory Ducatis of Andrea Dovizioso and Andrea Iannone with Maverick Vinales qualifying seventh, edging out Hector Barbera and Crutchlow. The Espargaro brothers will start together on row four, Pol ahead of Aleix, while Bradley Smith will be twelfth on the grid after only registering a 1:40.893 prior to his crash.


2016 Gran Premio Motul de la Republica Argentina (Qualifying Classification)

PosRiderConstructorTeamBest Time 
193. Marc MARQUEZHondaRepsol Honda Team1:39.411Q2
246. Valentino ROSSIYamahaMovistar Yamaha MotoGP1:39.786Q2
399. Jorge LORENZOYamahaMovistar Yamaha MotoGP1:39.944Q2
426. Dani PEDROSAHondaRepsol Honda Team1:40.011Q2
54. Andrea DOVIZIOSODucatiDucati Team1:40.198Q2
629. Andrea IANNONEDucatiDucati Team1:40.272Q2
725. Maverick VINALESSuzukiTeam SUZUKI ECSTAR1:40.375Q2
88. Hector BARBERADucatiAvintia Racing1:40.524Q2
935. Cal CRUTCHLOWHondaLCR Honda1:40.528Q2
1044. Pol ESPARGAROYamahaMonster Yamaha Tech 31:40.654Q2
1141. Aleix ESPARGAROSuzukiTeam SUZUKI ECSTAR1:40.708Q2
1238. Bradley SMITHYamahaMonster Yamaha Tech 31:40.893Q2
1376. Loris BAZDucatiAvintia Racing1:40.744Q1
1445. Scott REDDINGDucatiOcto Pramac Yakhnich1:40.750Q1
1543. Jack MILLERHondaEG 0,0 Marc VDS1:40.881Q1
166. Stefan BRADLApriliaAprilia Racing Team Gresini1:40.897Q1
1750. Eugene LAVERTYDucatiAspar MotoGP Team1:40.990Q1
1850. Michele PIRRODucatiOcto Pramac Yakhnich1:41.116Q1
1953. Tito RABATHondaEG 0,0 Marc VDS1:41.157Q1
2019. Alvaro BAUTISTAApriliaAprilia Racing Team Gresini1:41.611Q1
2168. Yonny HERNANDEZDucatiAspar MotoGP Team1:41.692Q1