Marquez masters tricky weather conditions to earn fifth consecutive Phillip Island Pole

2018-10-28 23:42
Marc Marquez taking pole position at Phillip Island is nothing new, but it was not easy today for the 2018 MotoGP World Champion to secure his fifth consecutive pole at the track (equalling Casey Stoner’s five poles in a row).

Tricky weather conditions, including occasional rain, low temperatures and cold wind, made the search for bike setup challenging and the track conditions demanding.

Marc, wearing gloves and boots in Mick Doohan’s colors as a tribute to the Aussie legend, was able to choose exactly the best moment to push, and his 1’29.199” lap time proved to be untouchable in the final minutes of the session.

Dani Pedrosa failed to earn a spot in Q2 and will start from the sixth row of the grid in the Australian Grand Prix, which will begin tomorrow at 4 p.m. local time, 6 a.m. Central European time.

With a 47-point lead in the Constructors Championship and three races remaining in the season, Honda have the chance to clinch their 24th Constructors Title tomorrow.

Marc Marquez
POLE POSITION 1'29.199
“Pole position today was quite difficult, and it was especially tricky to understand when it was the right time to push. The light rain that was falling wasn’t strong enough to wet the tarmac, but when you see the little drops on your visor and windscreen, things become a bit scary at this track. As soon as I realized that the drizzle had stopped, I did a good lap that was enough to be on pole for tomorrow. At the moment, I’m able to be fast and close to the top riders, but honestly speaking, I’m not feeling as comfortable as I would like. We were able to improve over the weekend and our mentality remains positive like always, but we don’t know exactly what to expect from tomorrow’s race. We saw many crashes and we crashed as well, and the weather is very unpredictable. Tyre choice will be important, as will understanding that it’s not an on-off situation—we have the Constructors and Team Championships to think of, and if it’s not possible to win, then it’s time to look for the podium.”

Marc Marquez
Dani Pedrosa
18TH 1'30.770
“It has been a very difficult day due to the track conditions and the strong wind. I didn’t have a good feeling, especially in the fast corners in the first and third sectors. I struggled to keep the wheel down on the ground; I kind of felt as if I were sailing. I couldn’t really use the corner speed, and that was a problem at this track, which is all about corner speed and lean angle. I wasn’t riding very well and did very bad in qualifying. I just hope it’s a bit less windy tomorrow and we can do better than today.”

Dani Pedrosa
Qualifying Classification
Pos. Rider Num Nation Team Time/Gap
1
MARQUEZ
Marc 93 SPA Repsol Honda Team 1'29.199
2
VINALES
Maverick 25 SPA Movistar Yamaha MotoGP 1'29.509 / 0.310
3
ZARCO
Johann 5 FRA Monster Yamaha Tech 3 1'29.705 / 0.506
4
IANNONE
Andrea 29 ITA Team Suzuki Ecstar 1'29.712 / 0.513
5
RINS
Alex 42 SPA Team Suzuki Ecstar 1'30.026 / 0.827
6
MILLER
Jack 43 AUS

Source: Honda Racing Corporation

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