2011 Sachsenring MotoGP Qualifying Practice Result: Late Charges Settle Front Row

Results and summary of qualifying practice for the MotoGP class at the Sachsenring:

Casey Stoner has secured his sixth pole of the year, putting in two scorching laps at the end of qualifying to secure his position. Stoner had not been fast early, Marco Simoncelli, Andrea Dovizioso and Jorge Lorenzo making the early running, but once the focus switched from setup to qualifying, Stoner made a leap forward. The Repsol Honda man was the first rider into the 1'21 bracket, and never relinquished pole again.

Beside Stoner on the front row is Dani Pedrosa, his shoulder coping well, helped by the fact that the Sachsenring consists largely of left handers, sparing his right shoulder, and this is a track he loves. Beside him on the outer edge of the front row is Jorge Lorenzo, the factory Yamaha rider putting in a big effort to secure 3rd with his very last lap, dislodging Marco Simoncelli from the front row. The San Carlo Gresini Honda rider has been fast all weekend, topping the first day of practice, but his rivals caught up with the Italian during qualifying. Lorenzo's Yamaha teammate Ben Spies sits in 5th, finding some improvement after Friday, and bumping Andrea Dovizioso down to 6th

Colin Edwards heads up the 3rd row, the Monster Tech 3 Yamaha rider doing better than his embattled teammate Cal Crutchlow, who had a nasty crash at the end of qualifying, though he walked away relatively unhurt. Nicky Hayden is the first Ducati on the grid at a track where the Desmosedici has struggled, sitting 8th just ahead of the Pramac Ducati of Randy de Puniet, while Alvaro Bautista rounds out the top 10 on the Rizla Suzuki.

Valentino Rossi's road to Calvary on the Ducati continues unabated, qualifying in just 16th, his worst ever position since starting 18th in Assen in 2006, after fracturing his wrist during free practice. 


Pos No. Rider Bike Time Diff Diff Previous
1 27 Casey STONER HONDA 1'21.681    
2 26 Dani PEDROSA HONDA 1'21.933 0.252 0.252
3 1 Jorge LORENZO YAMAHA 1'21.944 0.263 0.011
4 58 Marco SIMONCELLI HONDA 1'21.954 0.273 0.010
5 11 Ben SPIES YAMAHA 1'22.056 0.375 0.102
6 4 Andrea DOVIZIOSO HONDA 1'22.157 0.476 0.101
7 5 Colin EDWARDS YAMAHA 1'22.368 0.687 0.211
8 69 Nicky HAYDEN DUCATI 1'22.388 0.707 0.020
9 14 Randy DE PUNIET DUCATI 1'22.503 0.822 0.115
10 19 Alvaro BAUTISTA SUZUKI 1'22.604 0.923 0.101
11 8 Hector BARBERA DUCATI 1'22.676 0.995 0.072
12 35 Cal CRUTCHLOW YAMAHA 1'22.676 0.995 0.000
13 17 Karel ABRAHAM DUCATI 1'23.164 1.483 0.488
14 24 Toni ELIAS HONDA 1'23.201 1.520 0.037
15 7 Hiroshi AOYAMA HONDA 1'23.248 1.567 0.047
16 46 Valentino ROSSI DUCATI 1'23.320 1.639 0.072
17 50 Sylvain GUINTOLI DUCATI 1'24.707 3.026 1.387


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That's bang on the mark, CS27 looked like he and his crew found a significant step forward for race setup just before he put the soft option tyre on. Impressive comeback from DP26 too. I hope he can last race distance and battle it out with CS27 and JL1.

I still don't think there is a clear favourite for the race tomorrow. This is such a tough track to pull a gap on competitors ... I think it will be a close one to the end.

I'm happy for NH69 ... he is becoming more valuable to Ducati each round, his work ethic and never give-in attitude is definitely showing. I wish VR46 was at the pointy end because the racing is always better when he's at the front. His comments about CS27 last year are really coming back to bite him on the backside.

I'm happy for NH69 ... he is becoming more valuable to Ducati each round, his work ethic and never give-in attitude is definitely showing.

Fully agree, Nicky seems to get his package together and I think he deserves it. The interesting thing about his performance is that he puts pressure away from Ducati but relocates it on the shoulders of Rossi. When Rossi said the GP11 is at the end of its development life and as @Meguro showed below Nicky could significantly improve his time compared to 2010 ..., there is not a lot going Rossi's way right now, is it?

So Rossi could ditch the Ducati GP11.1 and go back to the GP11 in Laguna Seca. Will decide 2moro after meetings.""
the GP11.1 project has barely commenced yet its about to be trashed. development money and efforts down the drains. i wonder if hayden will bother wasting his time with it? maybe stoner was right, NH69 better concentrate on improving rather than wait for Rossi to fix a bike he obviously has no idea about. each day i marvel at the boy called stoner and the miracles he performed on the GP 11. If only ducati had more faith, more trust, more "money??''...
maybe they'll be enough money to make a bank breaking bid to bring back the cheshire cat grinning Australian!!!

and they were going to give me a new bike that has yet to be as quick as the current bike, I would probably use the old one for my home round. Nicky has been quicker than Rossi in every practice/QP session the last 2 races. Of course he ran off and finished behind Rossi at Mugello.

Maybe VR really needs Burgess there to get a hold of the new bike.

Great respect for Nicky, he is figuring out the Ducati, riding it to it's best potential [for anyone not named *Casey Stoner*] ...

I think Vale is still trying to chase a "Yamaha" type feel from the Ducati, even after he & JB admitted that they could not change the Duc into the Yam.

Perhaps NH69 is the fortunate one (vs VR46) in that the expectations are lower, and
Nicky can get on with riding & making the best of the Duc he has via incremental improvements and adjustments.

Perhaps VR46 is getting overloaded trying everything under the sun (including the GP12.800cc) trying to get to 1st place.

Stoner definitely did a 1.21.919 on the hard rear...good enough for pole!!
not sure about Simoncelli but seems his 21.959 was on the hard compound rear too.
Rossi will see his situation improve the moment he apologizes to Stoner for foolhardy comments last season now that he's on "HIS OWN BIKE"
....or maybe not!

Hector almost wrecked giving Nicky the bird. It looked like he was being towed by Nicky and then for some reason when he tried to draft by 69 for a better time Hector got mad. I really don't get that one.

Someone should tell Hector that when he breaks into the top 10, then he can start giving people the finger. Until then, sit at the kid's table and mind your manners.

The average qualifying time for 2011 is 1'22.500 (this excludes Guintoli, statistical outlier) and for 2010 the average was 1'22.666.
For the riders that remained with the same team here are their comparisons:
Dani 2010 1'21.948 2011 1'21.933
Jorge 2010 1'21.817 2011 1'21.944
Dovi 2010 1'22.263 2011 1'22.157
Barbera 2010 1'22.454 2011 1'22.454
Hayden 2010 1'23.090 2011 1'22.388
(I left out Simoncelli since he has been upgraded to a factory Honda)
Except for Hayden there is not much of a difference. This bring me to Casey; in 2010 he was 2nd with 1'21.841, add to this .057 sec (this is the average that the top 4 above, exluding Hayden) were slower than 2010, this will put Casey on 1'21.871 would still have put him on pole on a Ducati for 2011. Ok, I know this is just numbers and of course real life can play out very differently. Never the less I thought this may be interesting for those who like numbers.

In my opinion the problem with the Ducati as always been the same for the last 3 years: the carbon fiber chassis. It is to stiff and doe not let the front "rotate" thus not giving the rider the confidence he needs to corner. The problem with the carbon fiber chassis is it's anisotropic behavior i.e. it does not function the same way in al the directions because of the 2 pad fiber way. The treliss chassis, wile being a tube frame chassis with streel compound, as a much better behavior to tortion but it is heavier.

In my opinion, Preciosi changed the chassis to carbon, the Ducati lost track and they simply are lost and the reason they refuse to came back to the normal treliss chassis can only be one: pride! Preciosi is the next man to come down... it is a metter of time. And he will! Because no one listened to Stoner when he complained about the problems the bike had... but not giveng credebility to a 9x world champinon for the same problem... is just stupid.

Stoner deserved much much more credit and e must be very happy now, to see that, after all, they should have listened

Sorry for my pour English

Dani or someone else from the front can stay with Stoner and at least pressure him. Hopefully Dani's shoulder will be fit for the full race distance. I do expect to see the tires go off late if they run the softer(est) of the compounds. Good to see Ben looking a little more fit.

As for the Ducati, well I think Hayden is riding that bike for all it's worth right now but Rossi just seems to have no confidence in it and looks like it's him versus the Ducati more than him versus any other riders. I think the Ducati engineers need to forget the GP10 and GP11 ever happened and instead of throwing money at this design and trying to evolve it playing catch up the whole time just start from scratch and build a completely redesigned bike, maybe not engine wise obviously going to 1000CC but frame and swingarm.