Pedrosa hoping to qualify for front row after excellent second day of practice
The second day of the Qatar Grand Prix finished again with top places for the Repsol riders. The improvement of Dovizioso was added to Stoner and Pedrosa’s great performance yesterday. The three riders spearheaded the free practices final classification, with Casey Stoner in first position, Dani Pedrosa second and Andrea Dovizioso third.
In this unusual first Grand Prix of the season (with night practices during three days instead of the usual two days) the Repsol Honda Team riders showed an excellent level of performance. After the first session held yesterday, the premier class participants had today two 45-minutes sessions.
In his first run, the Australian rider of the Repsol Honda Team just needed a couple of laps to ride under 1 minute and 56 seconds. The bar set by Stoner was unreachable for the rest of his rivals and only Dani Pedrosa was able to get close. The Spaniard was the only one to ride in 1 minute and 55 seconds in the first session, apart from Stoner, and he repeated that time in the second free practice held today.
Pedrosa became the reference in the second session, as he set a time of 1 minute 55 seconds and 193 thousandths that placed him in the lead of the overall classification. However, two minutes before the end Stoner reduced his time by 158 thousandths, finishing at the top of the times classification.
The starting order will be set tomorrow with the definitive qualifying session. This will be the first time in the season the MotoGP riders will push their bikes to the max to secure a good place on the starting grid, which is extremely important in this circuit.
Dani Pedrosa 1’55.193 sec, 37 laps, 199 km.
“We did a good job today, especially in the third session. We concentrated on doing a good lap at the beginning and then we were focused on the pace. I’m happy about how is everything going – even if there are still some places where we know we can do better and improve some tenths, so let’s keep concentrated to do that tomorrow. For the qualifying session our target is to be on the front row; here my best position on the grid has been a sixth place and I would really like to be on front row tomorrow. This afternoon we tried both tyres, hard and medium, and both worked well; my feeling is that the hard compound is better for the race distance even if the race is one hour later than practice today, and the softer compound is the best option for the qualifying session”.
Source: Repsol Media