Johann Zarco takes a stunning and shocking pole position on the Esponsaramo Racing machine ahead of the Petronas teammates.
Zarco stormed to pole position with a 1:55.687, making him the best performing Ducati on the grid after a fairly woeful weekend for the manufacturer. Fabio Quartararo looked like he was on to steal the prime position from his countryman but a late crash at turn 13 on his final flying lap sent him, unhurt, into the gravel and starting Sunday’s race in second position. Petronas teammate Franco Morbidelli completes the front row in third, his best qualifying position since Japan 2019.
Aprilia’s Aleix Espargaro was another rider with a startling result as he took fourth after an early issue in Q2 after stalling his bike before even leaving pitlane. Maverick Vinales will fight for the victory from fifth position ahead of Pol Espargaro in sixth on the Red Bull KTM machine. Vinales was lucky to claim fifth in as P.Espargaro was on course to knock his countryman back but had his lap time cancelled and had to settle for sixth. Rookie Brad Binder had yet another stellar weekend to battle his way out of Q1 and into Q2 and line up seventh. Binder continued his excellent qualifying performance with his best qualifying performance in the premier class after capitalising on Taka Nakagami’s mistake which saw his Q1 lap time cancelled and prevented him from moving through into Q2.
Danilo Petrucci will start from eighth position ahead of Suzuki man Joan Mir in nineth and Valentino Rossi in tenth. Rossi will be hoping to battle back to take a monumental two-hundreth podium at the Brno circuit after claiming third in the AndaluciaGP. The walking wounded of Alex Rins and Cal Crutchlow line up eleventh and twelfth on the grid respectively. Both Rins and Crutchlow are still healing from injuries sustained in the opening weekend in Jerez as Rins continues to recover from his ongoing shoulder injury whilst Crutchlow nurses a post-surgical scaphoid wound.
Miguel Oliveira was unlucky to miss out on a Q2 place and will start from 13th ahead of Pramac Racing’s Jack Miller in 14th and Tito Rabat in 15th. Miller will be the lone representative for the Pramac team this weekend after a crash in FP1 saw Pecco Bagnaia require immediate surgery back home in Italy after he fractured his tibia.
Iker Lecuona will start from sixteenth ahead of Nakagami in seventeenth and Ducati’s Andrea Dovizioso in eighteenth after a nightmare weekend for the Italian. Bradley Smith could only manage nineteenth after a crash at turn 8 during Q1 whilst the Repsol Honda pairing of Stefan Bradl, who is currently standing in for the injured Marc Marquez, and Alex Marquez round out the grid in twentieth and twenty-first respectively.
Will Zarco be able to convert his incredible pole position into victory or will Quartararo rain on his parade to take his third win of the season?