Marc Marquez took pole position for the German Grand Prix for an eighth successive year after pipping Danilo Petrucci in wet conditions at the Sachsenring. Petrucci had looked set to become the first rider to advance out of Q1 to take pole position but Marquez denied the Italian in the closing minutes, taking pole by a tenth of a second.
A crash late in FP3 had proven costly for Petrucci who was forced to go through the first qualifying session but the Pramac rider, so often a frontrunner in wet conditions, comfortably topped the timesheets to move through to Q2. The man joining him was much more of a surprise though, with Pol Espargaro taking KTM into the pole position shootout for the first time since Le Mans.
The extra fifteen minutes of track time soon appeared to be an advantage as Petrucci dominated the early stages of Q2, regularly lowering his own benchmark time to stretch his advantage over the field. The Pramac rider was finally reeled in with two minutes remaining as Marquez clocked a 1:27.443, two hundredths quicker than Danilo.
Another improvement on his last lap gave Marquez an advantage of 0.160s in the end with Dani Pedrosa ensuring both factory Hondas will start on the front row, albeit six tenths adrift of his team-mate. Cal Crutchlow heads the second row ahead of home favourite Jonas Folger while Jorge Lorenzo put his recent wet weather demons behind him to qualify sixth, just ahead of the Espargaro brothers with Pol outqualifying Aleix.
Valentino Rossi could only manage ninth as the championship contenders, Marquez apart, struggled in the wet conditions. Overall leader Andrea Dovizioso lines up tenth ahead of nearest rival Maverick Vinales who appeared rattled by a mid-session spat with Marquez while Alvaro Bautista completed the Q2 field in twelfth.
2017 GoPro Grand Prix Motorrad Deutschland – Qualifying
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