Jorge Lorenzo broke his own Misano pole position record to claim pole position for the San Marino Grand Prix. The Spaniard saw off surprise package Jack Miller to take his fourth Misano pole position in five seasons while reigning champion Marc Marquez could only manage fifth after a scrappy Q2 session.
With Lorenzo in such supreme form, much of the drama was found elsewhere although that shouldn’t detract from a magnificent display from the Ducati rider. Lorenzo’s opening lap of Q2 immediately launched him onto provisional pole and although his 1:31.763 was already good enough for top spot, that didn’t stop the no.99 going even quicker on his second run, clocking the fastest ever two-wheeled lap of Misano.
Meanwhile, Marquez was pushing his Honda to the limit in his efforts to keep pace with his compatriot and the championship leader overstepped the limit at turn 15, losing the front end of his RC213V. This forced Marquez into a desperate dash to his pit-box in scenes reminiscent of his Austin pit-lane sprint of 2015. Although he did make it back in time for a last-ditch attempt, Marc wouldn’t improve on his own 1:32.016.
This would open the door for the sensational Miller who broke into the 1:31s himself to secure second, while a late flyer from Maverick Vinales saw him deny Ducati a lockout of the front row, pipping Andrea Dovizioso to third. Marquez dropped to fifth while Cal Crutchlow will start alongside in sixth despite a crash of his own at turn one.
Home favourite Valentino Rossi will start seventh ahead of Danilo Petrucci and Johann Zarco while Alex Rins completed the top ten, just ahead of Q2 qualifiers Dani Pedrosa and Franco Morbidelli.
2018 GP Octo di San Marino e Della Riviera di Rimini (Qualifying)
|1||99. Jorge Lorenzo||Ducati||Ducati Team||1:31.629||Q2|
|2||43. Jack Miller||Ducati||Alma Pramac Racing||1:31.916||Q2|
|3||25. Maverick Vinales||Yamaha||Movistar Yamaha MotoGP||1:31.950||Q2|
|4||4. Andrea Dovizioso||Ducati||Ducati Team||1:32.003||Q2|
|5||93. Marc Marquez||Honda||Repsol Honda Team||1:32.016||Q2|
|6||35. Cal Crutchlow||Honda||LCR Honda Castrol||1:32.025||Q2|
|7||46. Valentino Rossi||Yamaha||Movistar Yamaha MotoGP||1:32.028||Q2|
|8||9. Danilo Petrucci||Ducati||Alma Pramac Racing||1:32.136||Q2|
|9||5. Johann Zarco||Yamaha||Monster Yamaha Tech 3||1:32.250||Q2|
|10||42. Alex Rins||Suzuki||Team Suzuki ECSTAR||1:32.338||Q2|
|11||26. Dani Pedrosa||Honda||Repsol Honda Team||1:32.369||Q2|
|12||21. Franco Morbidelli||Honda||EG 0,0 Marc VDS||No Time||Q2|
|13||29. Andrea Iannone||Suzuki||Team Suzuki ECSTAR||1:32.566||Q1|
|14||51. Michele Pirro||Ducati||Ducati Team||1:32.624||Q1|
|15||19. Alvaro Bautista||Ducati||Angel Nieto Team||1:32.792||Q1|
|16||41. Aleix Espargaro||Aprilia||Aprilia Racing Team Gresini||1:33.084||Q1|
|17||38. Bradley Smith||KTM||Red Bull KTM Factory Racing||1:33.085||Q1|
|18||6. Stefan Bradl||Honda||HRC Honda Team||1:33.361||Q1|
|19||30. Takaaki Nakagami||Honda||LCR Honda IDEMITSU||1:33:437||Q1|
|20||43. Pol Espargaro||KTM||Red Bull KTM Factory Racing||1:33.502||Q1|
|21||45. Scott Redding||Aprilia||Aprilia Racing Team Gresini||1:33.572||Q1|
|22||10. Xavier Simeon||Ducati||Reale Avintia Racing||1:33.705||Q1|
|23||12. Thomas Luthi||Honda||EG 0,0 Marc VDS||1:33.755||Q1|
|24||17. Karel Abraham||Ducati||Angel Nieto Team||1:33.812||Q1|
|25||55. Hafizh Syahrin||Yamaha||Monster Yamaha Tech 3||1:34.080||Q1|
|26||23. Christophe Ponsson||Ducati||Reale Avintia Racing||1:37.180||Q1|