MotoGP: Marc Marquez breaks track record to earn sixth pole of the season


Honda’s MotoGP championship leader Marc Marquez took his sixth pole position of the season in record tim at the San Marino Grand Prix yesterday.

The 20-year-old Spanish rookie lapped the Misano Marco Simoncelli circuit with a fastest time of 1min 32.915sec – quicker than the lap record of 1:33.138 set by Australian Casey Stoner in 2011.

Marquez, who has a 30-point lead over compatriot and team-mate Dani Pedrosa, will have the Yamahas of world champion Jorge Lorenzo and Italian Valentino Rossi with him on the front row for today’s race. Pedrosa starts fourth with Britain’s Cal Crutchlow in fifth on the non-works Tech3 Yamaha.

Marquez was handed two penalty points at the previous race in Britain, but these are separate from championship points. Any rider racking up four penalty points starts the next race from the back of the grid.

Lorenzo and Rossi were using a new seamless gearbox in qualifying. “We improved a little but not enough to be closer to Marc,” said Lorenzo, who was more than half a second off Marquez’s fastest time.

In Moto2, Spain’s title contender Pol Espargaro starts on pole with British overall leader Scott Redding fifth.