2019 Qatar MotoGP Qualifying Result: Mixed Fortunes For Teammates All Around

The lovely lights of Losail did little to compensate for the modest and humid 16 degrees of track temperature but premier class riders tried their best to sign their names to the first pole position of the season. Maverick Vinales showed his cards early with the first 1:53 time of the session barely five minutes into the action, laying an impressive benchmark for the pursuers. While the Spaniard ran comfortably into the 1:53s, everyone else struggled to get within three tenths of a second during the first run. And the second one started no different, the Yamaha youngster finding another couple of tenths which came in handy when Andrea Dovizioso showed up to the party. Too little too late for the Italian, who had to settle for second as Vinales secured pole.

Meanwhile, Marc Marquez and Danilo Petrucci had been doing the tango all throughout the session and had to rely on one final lap for a real time attack. Marquez came out on top in that game, the Honda rider slipstreaming his way onto the front row, only one thousandth of a second behind Dovizioso. Jack Miller had another impressive session and although it ended quite spectacularly in the gravel trap, the Pramac rider was the second best Ducati in fourth position. The achievement might have seemed more impressive, had Fabio Quartararo not qualified fifth after an excellently consistent weekend in Qatar for the rookie. Q1 leader Cal Crutchlow survived two bouts of tricky conditions to close the second row of the grid.

Petrucci was on the losing end of the battle with the world champion and although the Italian dominated FP4, he could not quite match that performance in qualifying, opening row three ahead of Franco Morbidelli and Takaaki Nakagami. Alex Rins was an underwhelming tenth grid position, seven tenths off the poleman, just about ahead of teammate Joan Mir and with a lonely Aleix Espargaro completing fourth row.

Jorge Lorenzo’s bad day continued, the Spaniard going down in turn two while in a top two position in Q1, but a kinder crash in the grand scheme of things. Valentino Rossi, on the other hand, safely crossed the finish line to further demote his former teammate but it was nothing to write home about. The Italian finished in 14th place, one behind his young apprentice, Pecco Bagnaia, the much-talked-about trio sharing row five.


Pos. Num. Rider Bike Time Gap 1st Prev.
1 12 Maverick VIÑALES Yamaha 1'53.546    
2 4 Andrea DOVIZIOSO Ducati 1'53.744 0.198 0.198
3 93 Marc MARQUEZ Honda 1'53.745 0.199 0.001
4 43 Jack MILLER Ducati 1'53.809 0.263 0.064
5 20 Fabio QUARTARARO Yamaha 1'53.946 0.400 0.137
6 35 Cal CRUTCHLOW Honda 1'54.095 0.549 0.149
7 9 Danilo PETRUCCI Ducati 1'54.200 0.654 0.105
8 21 Franco MORBIDELLI Yamaha 1'54.236 0.690 0.036
9 30 Takaaki NAKAGAMI Honda 1'54.239 0.693 0.003
10 42 Alex RINS Suzuki 1'54.257 0.711 0.018
11 36 Joan MIR Suzuki 1'54.390 0.844 0.133
12 41 Aleix ESPARGARO Aprilia 1'54.917 1.371 0.527
    Q1 Results:        
Q2 35 Cal CRUTCHLOW Honda 1'54.270    
Q2 30 Takaaki NAKAGAMI Honda 1'54.431 0.161 0.161
13 63 Francesco BAGNAIA Ducati 1'54.472 0.202 0.041
14 46 Valentino ROSSI Yamaha 1'54.537 0.267 0.065
15 99 Jorge LORENZO Honda 1'54.563 0.293 0.026
16 44 Pol ESPARGARO KTM 1'54.740 0.470 0.177
17 88 Miguel OLIVEIRA KTM 1'55.122 0.852 0.382
18 53 Tito RABAT Ducati 1'55.428 1.158 0.306
19 29 Andrea IANNONE Aprilia 1'55.464 1.194 0.036
20 17 Karel ABRAHAM Ducati 1'55.642 1.372 0.178
21 5 Johann ZARCO KTM 1'55.797 1.527 0.155
22 55 Hafizh SYAHRIN KTM 1'55.937 1.667 0.140
23 38 Bradley SMITH Aprilia 1'56.036 1.766 0.099
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Maverick was stunning, how can the slowest-trapping bike on the grid get to pole position?! I can imagine it’ll get pretty frustrating tomorrow if he’s continually beaten up on the straight, but if he can manage to break the tow he might do a ‘Lorenzo’ which isn’t something, err, Lorenzo is going to do. It’s early days but is the Yamaha now going in Maverick’s direction, him being poles apart from VR46 this time? And those Hondas, are they really not fully developed on the front end, and is that due to the injured HRC trio? It’s all very intriguing, roll on the morrow!

... there’s so little indication that Maverick is a break-away rider. If anything, he’s among the slowest starters on the grid with a full fuel load. I think Marquez will be the rabid dog of the front row and the others will have to scramble to prevent gifting him as much as a 1 second lead after the first couple of laps. I see the Ducatis being perhaps strongest over race distance, yet I’m most curious to see the crusty, pissed-off Italian on the 5th row once the flag drops...