Marc Marquez’s dominance at Circuit of The Americas continued as the Repsol Honda rider set a new Circuit Best Lap record of 2’02.773 in qualifying, beating the record he set last year by a third of a second to take pole position. Marquez out-qualified his teammate Dani Pedrosa by 0.289 seconds, while LCR Honda’s Stefan Bradl completed an all-Honda front row by finishing third quickest with a best lap time a tenth of a second slower than Pedrosa. All riders on the front row used the combination of the medium compound front and rear slicks during their time attack in Qualifying Practice 2.

Conditions today were similar to yesterday, with cool and windy conditions in the morning session followed by warmer temperatures in the afternoon, with a peak track temperature of 43°C recorded during Qualifying Practice 2. The thirty-minute FP4 session was used to assess race tyre options and all three rear slick options brought to this circuit were utilized. For the Factory Honda and Yamaha riders, both the medium and hard compound rear slicks were used to good effect today and should figure on the grid for tomorrow’s race. For the Ducati and Open-class riders, the medium compound rear is the preferred option, although some riders will elect to use the soft compound rear for the race. Front-end stability while cornering and braking is extremely important at Circuit of The Americas and this is evident with the harder, medium compound front slick being the most popular option. The weather forecast predicts a slight chance of rain for tomorrow’s twenty-one lap Americas Grand Prix which starts at 1400 local time (GMT -5). The riders will have one last chance to confirm their race setup during the twenty minute Warm Up session at 0940.

Marc Marquez

“I’m very happy with how the weekend is going and with the qualifying session – especially taking pole position. I have a good feeling with the bike and have been setting a good pace ahead of tomorrow’s race. We will try to get a good start and I’m sure we’ll be fighting with Dani, as he is our strongest rival. I think that the beginning of the race will be the most important part, because with this heat the tyres suffer a lot. I will try to remain focused and have a good race!”

Dani Pedrosa

“We improved the bike a lot today and I was able to ride much better than yesterday. I managed to come very close in qualifying and hope to take advantage of all my chances to win tomorrow’s race. Last year we came second so I will look to take one step further tomorrow!”

Aleix Espargaro

“First open and 4th overall is a very good result. We definitely improved in the qualifying, but we don’t have the strong pace that we had in Qatar. The bike is unstable in the hard braking and I struggled a lot . In these conditions the race becomes also very physically demanding. Anyway, we will take the start from a good grid position and I will do my best.”

Jorge Lorenzo

“The progression from the first practice on Friday is very big, we were two seconds behind and now half a second. Anyway, as I thought it’s going to be a hard race tomorrow. Our goal is to fight for fourth or third position, I think it would be a good result because here our competitors are really strong so we need to make the best result we can, to finish on the podium would be a good thing.”

Valentino Rossi

“I am happy about today’s qualifying, especially because from this morning to the afternoon session we were able to improve the bike and in qualifying I was pretty fast. Following the last free practice we also made another step ahead and I enjoyed the qualifying session; I went well. I am happy to be on second row; it is not bad at all. I am also happy I am just four tenth’s from pole position. My pace is good, although we still have to work and cut some little tenth but I think tomorrow might be a good day for us.”

Bradley Smith

“In general, I am quite satisfied with 8th position, I have improved by 1.6 seconds from yesterday, which is positive and also a huge leap compared to the qualifying time from last year. I set a good lap time in FP3 which I was then able to better by two tenths later on in QP2. Unfortunately, I made a mistake in the last sector during my fastest lap which cost me around 3 tenths, and I would have been only 0.2 seconds from the Factory Yamaha bikes if this hadn’t occurred, which is an acceptable gap. So now we need to analyse the information, see where we can improve furthermore and make another step during tomorrow’s warm up. Anyway, I am really looking forward to the race where I will focus on getting a good start, and being as aggressive as possible to get into the top five at the first corner. No doubt, it will be a tough GP with plenty of overtaking, so I have to be prepared to pass other riders and keep a good lap time for all 21 laps.

Pol Espargaro

“Overall, I am pretty happy as I went straight into QP2, which shows a big improvement since Qatar. On the other hand I am a little disappointed with 11th, as I was near the top guys, and only one tenth of a second off 7th place. If I had not made some small mistakes on the second run with the new tyre, I know I could have gone faster. The bike felt good, although I did experience some issues with the front end of the bike and also with the wheeling which we tried to fix, and will continue to resolve tomorrow. Also, I needed to relearn the track on a MotoGP bike, which is difficult as I must be smoother. Jorge and Valentino are able to be so quick as they ride in this manner, and this is what I need to improve. I feel positive for the race, as the riders in front of me, rode with a soft tyre today, which gives me an advantage as they can’t use it tomorrow. I need a good start, and it will be a tough battle but I am confident that I can overtake and get a good result.”

Alvaro Bautista

“Today, like yesterday, we had another difficult day: we worked a lot looking for a set-up that could give me a better feeling with the bike together with some more rear grip, but despite various attempts we have obtained nothing positive, and I continue to have the same feelings of yesterday. Tomorrow morning during the warm up we will try the hard tyre: it’s strange, but as soon as I tried it for the first time during QP1, I was immediately fast, so we want to understand whether it can be a good option for the race. If my feeling will improve, we can be more competitive, but we start from a bad position so it will be important to make a good start. I’m still confident, the race is always a story in itself, and of course we will give the maximum to take as many points as possible”.

Scott Redding

“I knew that the qualifying lap was one thing I needed to work on, but today we did a really good job: I didn’t expect to make this lap time – I expected something like 2’05”0, but in the end I was feeling good and relaxed, so lap times came easily. I’m happy to be the fastest ‘Production Racer’ Honda again, but now we have to see how the race goes tomorrow, because maybe is going to be more difficult with the hard tyre. Maybe we could also use the softer tyre, but I’m going to try the hard one: if it’s not good, we will learn something. Now it’s the time to do these kind of things, because we are still early in the season”.

Nicky Hayden

“I honestly thought the flowing sections of this track would be easier than they have been today. I struggled through there last year and I thought it would be much more easy on the Honda but that hasn’t really been the case and we have also had some electronic issues that have cost us valuable time. It is a shame that our home GP isn’t going to plan at the moment but looking on the bright side we improved by a full second in qualifying and we have to keep working hard in the warm-up tomorrow to try and find a bit more. Hopefully we can do that and give the fans here a better show in the race.”

Hiroshi Aoyama

“Today we continued to work on the front end of the bike and we have found a pretty positive feeling. I feel more comfortable on the bike and the lap times are getting quicker. The only mistake we made was perhaps going a bit too far with the changes to the set-up because when they didn’t work we didn’t have time to go back. I’m not worried because we have a solid base to work from tomorrow and we know that will be very useful for the race. Tomorrow is the most important day of the weekend, we just have to stay focused on the job at hand and give it our best.”

Andrea Iannone

“I am very satisfied with the work done today even though we didn’t improve much, but that’s fine. I rode very close to the limit that our bike allows us on this track. Compared to last year we are going two seconds faster, which is definitely a positive thing. Looking at the other riders it makes us thing that we can do better but we have to have patience because our work has just begun. I thank again the team and Ducati who supports me.”

Yonny Hernandez

“I’m sorry for how qualifying went today, as soon as I got out on track I made a mistake. Today’s result is better than Qatar one and this is a good thing. I worked hard on the bikes setup, I am satisfied with feeling of bikes. Tomorrow I will do my best to achieve my goal, to finish in the points. I thank the team for the work done to day.”

Colin Edwards

“The track is very demanding and this complicates the situation. I’ m struggling a lot with the bike and this is not what I wanted for my home GP. We will continue to work and try to change something for the race.”

MotoGP 2014 Austin Qualifying timings

  • 1. Marc Marquez (SPA) Repsol Honda Team 2’02.773
  • 2. Dani Pedrosa (SPA) Repsol Honda Team 2’03.062
  • 3. Stefan Bradl (GER) LCR Honda MotoGP 2’03.196
  • 4. Aleix Espargaro (SPA) NGM Mobile Forward Racing 2’03.240
  • 5. Jorge Lorenzo (SPA) Movistar Yamaha MotoGP 2’03.243
  • 6. Valentino Rossi (ITA) Movistar Yamaha MotoGP 2’03.244
  • 7. Cal Crutchlow (GBR) Ducati Team 2’03.780
  • 8. Bradley Smith (GBR) Monster Yamaha Tech3 2’03.800
  • 9. Andrea Iannone (ITA) Pramac Racing 2’03.842
  • 10. Andrea Dovizioso (ITA) Ducati Team 2’03.846
  • 11. Pol Espargarò (SPA) Monster Yamaha Tech3 2’03.913
  • 12. Alvaro Bautista (SPA) Go&Fun Honda Gresini 2’03.923
  • 13. Scott Redding (GBR) Go&Fun Honda Gresini 2’04.617
  • 14. Nicky Hayden (USA) Drive M7 Aspar 2’05.062
  • 15. Yonny Hernandez (COL) Energy T.I. Pramac Racing 2’05.677
  • 16. Hiroshi Aoyama (JPN) Drive M7 Aspar 2’05.788
  • 17. Karel Abraham (CZE) Cardion AB Motoracing 2’06.239
  • 18. Hector Barbera (SPA) Avintia Racing 2’06.270
  • 19. Colin Edwards (USA) NGM Mobile Forward Racing 2’06.741
  • 20. Michael Laverty (GBR) Paul Bird Motorsport 2’06.939
  • 21. Brok Parkes (AUS) Paul Bird Motorsport 2’07.403
  • 22. Danilo Petrucci (ITA) Came Iodaracing Project 2’07.745
  • 23. Mike Di Meglio (FRA) Avintia Racing 2’07.761


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