Motorcycling: Capirossi looks for hat-trick
Saturday 01 October 2005
The 32-year-old Italian will start from pole position for the third week in a row on his Marlboro Ducati on the 3.34-mile Losail circuit in Qatar. He has won the last two rounds in Malaysia and Japan on the 990cc V4, aided by a remarkable comeback by the Bridgestone tyre company.
Capirossi's qualifying time of 1min 56.917secs took more than two seconds from last year's pole record, set by his current team-mate Carlos Checa. "We tested a lot of tyres and found the best solution for the front one, but for the race it will be very difficult," Capirossi said.
"Twenty-one laps in these hot conditions will be tough for everybody," he added, "but I'm very happy with this pole position, because it's not easy to overtake at this track."
Ducati switched to Bridgestone from Michelin this year, but the combination appeared to flounder in the face of opposition from Yamaha, Honda, Suzuki and Kawasaki. Ducati have always been able to match the Japanese factories in engine power, but have not always found the right grip in the corners.
Now, just as Valentino Rossi has clinched his seventh world championship, the Ducatis - flame-red in Italy's traditional racing colour - have reignited the season with four races remaining. Capirossi is only 17 points behind Repsol Honda's Max Biaggi in the battle for second place in the championship.
Telefonica Honda's Sete Gibernau and Rossi, on the Gauloises Yamaha, complete the front row for today's race. Shane Byrne, called into the Camel Honda squad for two races, qualified in 17th place, just ahead of fellow Briton James Ellison on the Blata.
Another Italian team, MV Agusta, was the last European manufacturer to win three consecutive MotoGP races, in 1972, before Japanese bikes began their domination.
Latest in Sport
Radamel Falcao: 'Changes are not easy, but there are times when you have to'
Female BBC presenter receives offensive and sexist letter after she criticised level of women's sport given TV coverage and sponsorship
Premier League 2015/16 kits: Confirmed and rumoured strips from Arsenal, Manchester United, Liverpool, Chelsea and others
West Brom vs Arsenal: Aaron Ramsey desperate to be back in the middle for Arsenal title challenge
Arsenal fan asks the Queen for tickets to the FA Cup final - gets a reply from Buckingham Palace
- 1 Crystal meth addict 'gouged out his eyes and ate them' while high on drug, Australian MP claims
- 2 Saudi Arabia 'seeking to head United Nations Human Rights Council'
- 3 Irish people are travelling home from all over the world so they can vote to legalise gay marriage
- 4 Witch doctor arrested after forcing newborn baby to walk in Indian village
- 5 Arsenal fan asks the Queen for tickets to the FA Cup final - gets a reply from Buckingham Palace
As a white man, I'm surprised more women aren't tweeting the hashtag #KillAllWhiteMen
Scotland may have to leave the EU even if it votes to stay in, David Cameron confirms
Report finds that Britain's wages are the most unequal in Europe
Almost a third of school pupils believe 'Muslims are taking over our country', study claims
The day that Britain resigned as a global power
Gay marriage 'Bert and Ernie' cake bakery found guilty of discrimination in Northern Ireland
£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software / C# Developer w...
£35 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Software Developer (JavaS...
£18000 - £23000 per annum + Commission: SThree: As a Trainee Recruitment Consu...