Pedrosa on pole for Indianapolis with Stoner a doubt after crash

2012-08-18 21:35
In a dramatic Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix qualifying session that was marred with heavy crashes, it was Repsol Honda Team’s Dani Pedrosa who grabbed pole position in front of Jorge Lorenzo and Andrea Dovizioso. Pedrosa’s teammate Casey Stoner remains a doubt for tomorrow’s race, while Ducati Team’s Nicky Hayden has been ruled out after suffering concussion.

Pedrosa put in a new fastest ever lap in the high 1.38s, relegating Yamaha Factory Racing’s Jorge Lorenzo into second on the grid, after he had struggled with his bike in the preceding sessions. Monster Yamaha Tech 3’s Andrea Dovizioso completes the front row, having improved steadily all weekend on his satellite machine. Heading up the second row in fourth is Lorenzo’s teammate Ben Spies, who did incredibly well to walk away from a big crash whilst pushing hard on a hot lap. LCR Honda MotoGP’s Stefan Bradl will be very pleased with his day’s work, after the German rookie managed to put his bike fifth on the grid.

Repsol Honda’s Casey Stoner, who set the sixth fastest time, suffered a monstrous highside early in the session, causing the red flag to appear, which resulted in small marginal fractures in the ankle.. He is undergoing further checks at the Indianapolis Methodist Hospital to confirm his injury and determine his race fitness for tomorrow. In seventh place on the grid, Tech 3’s Cal Crutchlow was unable to match his teammate’s feat, but will no doubt be pleased with his session, after having suffered two crashes in previous outings.

Ducati Team’s Nicky Hayden was viciously thrown off his bike in the same bend as Stoner and Spies (Turn 13), in the latter part of the session, briefly rendering him unconscious. The red flag was once again shown while Hayden received medical attention. He was spared any serious injuries, though has been declared unfit to race and fractures to his 2-3 metacarpus. His time would have placed him eighth on the grid. This moved San Carlo Honda Gresini’s Álvaro Bautista into eighth, with Power Electronics Aspar’s Randy de Puniet putting in a terrific performance to place ninth on his CRT machine.

Ducati’s Valentino Rossi could only manage 10th place, after suffering a scare in turn 13 with his bike, causing him to abort his fast lap. Attack Performance’s Steve Rapp and GPTech’s Aaron Yates, both CRT wildcards this weekend, managed to qualify for the race, in 22nd and 23rd place respectively. Many of the riders spoke out about the track surface after the qualifying session sighting safety concerns after the three heavy crashes.

Pramac Racing Team’s Héctor Barberá, who has been replaced by Toni Elías after fracturing three vertebrae in his back, is currently on his way back to Barcelona for further medical assessments.


Moto2

Under sunny skies at the Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix it was Pons 40 HP Tuenti’s Pol Espargaró who stormed to pole position in front of Marc Márquez and Andrea Iannone in Moto2™ qualifying.

Espargaró put in yet another record-breaking lap with a 1.42’602 to beat his compatriot Márquez on board the Team CatalunyaCaixa Repsol Suter machine. The championship leader was pushing hard towards the end of the session to try and put his bike on pole, causing some near falls whilst dodging other lapping traffic. Speed Master’s Andrea Iannone looked to have no such troubles as he put his machine on the outside of the front row, improving drastically from the morning practice.

Blusens Avintia’s Julián Simón made a rare appearance at the front and will undoubtedly be pleased with today’s efforts, as he looks to get back to fighting for a podium step. Technomag-CIP’s Dominique Aegerter was also on top form as he placed him machine in fifth, with Marc VDS Racing Team’s Scott Redding completing the second row. Redding, who had been quick all weekend, sighted a slipping clutch as one of the issues he was having during qualifying.

Italtrans Racing Team’s Claudio Corti heads the third row, ahead of Redding’s teammate Mika Kallio and Interwetten-Paddock’s Tom Lüthi. Lüthi still looked to be struggling at the Indianapolis circuit, where he has failed to find his rhythm in any session so far. Mapfre Aspar Team Moto2’s Nico Terol however continued his resurgence in form as he put his Suter in the top ten. NGM Mobile Forward Racing’s Alex de Angelis crashed his FTR early on, yet was able to re-join and finish the session in 16th.


Moto3

It was Red Bull KTM Ajo’s Sandro Cortese who was on top from during an eventful qualifying for the Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix as he took a superb pole position ahead of Danny Kent and Maverick Viñales.

The session got off to a bad start as Mapfre Aspar Team Moto3’s Héctor Faubel suffered a huge highside in the final turn, sending him summersaulting over the handlebars. Qualifying was red-flagged for approximately ten minutes while Faubel was taken to the medical centre, where he was cleared of any serious injury. He was however been taken to Indianapolis Methodist Hospital which revealed a belly trauma with abdominal free liquid. He will be kept there overnight and reassessed in the morning.

Once proceedings got back under way it was Cortese who put in a top time of 1.48’545 to earn him a start from the front in tomorrow’s race. Lining up next to him in second is teammate Kent who will be frustrated that he was pipped to pole by a very small margin. Blusens Avintia’s Viñales completes the front row after being caught up in traffic on his final laps.

The second row is headed by RW Racing GP’s Luis Salom, with fifth spot on the grid going to AirAsia-SIC-Ajo’s Zulfahmi Khairuddin. Sixth place is occupied by Estrella Galicia 0,0’s Alex Rins, who was unable to repeat his practice performance. JHK Laglisse’s Efrén Vázquez finished the qualifying session in seventh, after having to abort a fast lap in the final seconds. Next to him in eighth, Team Italia FMI’s Romano Fenati put in a solid showing, while completing the third row in ninth is Andalucia JHK Laglisse’s Alberto Moncayo.

The session was marred with further accidents, as Caretta Technology’s Jack Miller suffered an unfortunate crash shortly after the restart, which saw his bike slide into and take out JHK Laglisse’s Adrián Martín. The Spaniard was able to re-join, yet Miller broke his left collarbone for the second time this season, having also broken the right side this year.

With only ten minutes left, San Carlo Gresini Moto3’s Niccolò Antonelli added to the crash list with a tumble at turn 11, though was able to ride back to the pits. This was followed shortly by Mahindra Racing’s Danny Webb, who highsided his machine at turn four, sighting serious pain in his right arm and wrist. New addition to the Moto3 field, Ambrogio Next Racing’s Alex Márquez, suffered three crashes throughout the session, with the latter one, a big highside, bringing out the red flag with only 23 seconds left on the clock. Márquez also went to the medical centre sighting pain in his foot.

Source: MotoGP

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