MotoGP: Surprisingly Dry Qualifying at Valencia

11/05/2011 @ 7:10 am, by Jensen Beeler1 COMMENT

With rain coming down during the 125GP session, MotoGP narrowly avoided its own water-soaked qualifying. With wet sessions on Friday, the order of things was disrupted as the Ducatis clearly could overcome their problems in the damp conditions. As the track dried though, the Honda dominance returned, making the Spanish skies a huge factor for Sunday’s Valencian GP. Depending on who you talk to in the paddock, it’s either a guarantee for rain tomorrow, or it will be assuredly sunny, meaning no one has a clue what the weather will really be like.

While Stoner and Pedrosa have had their accustomed positions on the time sheets, Valencia has seen moments of brilliance from Hayden, Rossi, de Puniet, and Bautista, as all four riders have had an extra pep in their step during the inclement weather. The Spanish venue seems especially to favor the Spaniard Bautista, as the Suzuki rider has been a cut faster than previously in the season, no doubt encouraged by a home crowd and the desire to help Rizla Suzuki secure a future in MotoGP.

The other notable standout this weekend has been American Josh Hayes, who has been aided by the rain and adapted readily to the Monster Tech3 Yamaha YZR-M1 typically ridden by Colin Edwards. Not having to learn the carbon brake discs of MotoGP, and with the Bridgestone tires blunted by the water, Hayes has come up to speed rather quickly on the M1, finishing FP1 with a respectable P10. How that learning curve would change in the dry though remains a pressing question mark on the AMA Superbike Champion’s mind, though that seems to be the case for many riders this weekend. Qualifying results after the jump.

Qualifying Results from the Valencian GP at Valencia, Spain:

127Casey STONERAUSRepsol Honda TeamHonda1’31.861
226Dani PEDROSASPARepsol Honda TeamHonda1’32.8751.014
311Ben SPIESUSAYamaha Factory RacingYamaha1’33.0571.196
414Randy DE PUNIETFRAPramac Racing TeamDucati1’33.1181.257
519Alvaro BAUTISTASPARizla Suzuki MotoGPSuzuki1’33.4431.582
646Valentino ROSSIITADucati TeamDucati1’33.4781.617
769Nicky HAYDENUSADucati TeamDucati1’33.6561.795
84Andrea DOVIZIOSOITARepsol Honda TeamHonda1’33.8241.963
98Hector BARBERASPAMapfre Aspar Team MotoGPDucati1’34.1862.325
1017Karel ABRAHAMCZECardion AB MotoracingDucati1’34.2652.404
1135Cal CRUTCHLOWGBRMonster Yamaha Tech 3Yamaha1’34.3292.468
1265Loris CAPIROSSIITAPramac Racing TeamDucati1’34.6712.810
1324Toni ELIASSPALCR Honda MotoGPHonda1’34.6802.819
147Hiroshi AOYAMAJPNSan Carlo Honda GresiniHonda1’34.8382.977
1589Katsuyuki NAKASUGAJPNYamaha Factory RacingYamaha1’35.9994.138
1641Josh HAYESUSAMonster Yamaha Tech 3Yamaha1’36.0424.181

Source: MotoGP; Photo: Pramac Ducati

  • 76

    Katsuyuki Nakasuga is less than tenth ahead of Hayes, and its his job to ride the M1, and has been the whole year, good job test rider robot. I hope Hayes figures it out enough to take him and Aoyama.

    Stoner puts it down, more than a full second ahead of everyone, we can talk about the Honda being the best bike but Stoner has showed he is so far ahead of the rest its not even a race. Nobody has anything for him, it becomes his race to lose every weekend and I dont see that changing anytime soon.