Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa took a fantastic pole position for tomorrow’s Malaysian GP – his third this year, his 31st in MotoGP, and the 49th in his career.
After struggling in the wet on Friday, Dani was able to consistently improve his pace in today’s sunny and hot conditions, setting the third fastest lap time in FP3 and the fifth quickest in FP4 before besting Johann Zarco and Andrea Dovizioso by 0.017” and 0.024”, respectively, in the last minute of an incredibly hard-fought qualifying session.
“I’m very happy with this pole, which is our third this year. It’s a nice feeling because I usually struggle in qualifying, but the track improved a lot with today’s sunny conditions, offering good grip. Both tyres worked very well in qualifying, so I was able to find the rhythm on my first flying lap and set a good time, and then I pushed harder and improved on my second run. I made a couple of little mistakes but it was enough for the pole, which is fantastic. I’m happy for the team, as this pole is for them. We’ll have to see what the conditions are like for the race as we’re still struggling in the wet, so we’re really hoping for the sun tomorrow.”
— Dani Pedrosa (@26_DaniPedrosa) October 28, 2017
“It is so important to start the Grand Prix on the front row of the grid, and I even expected pole position because I was in first for a small amount of time at the end of Qualifying 2. I am happy because to be fast on a single lap is a good thing, but my pace is very competitive, so if we have dry and warm conditions tomorrow, then I think I will be able to win the race if I manage everything well. We will see what happens with regards to the weather. But I am just delighted to have this confidence which allows me to push in this way and I have high hopes for the round 17 fight.”
“The front row was our target and we achieved it today. But I’m even happier about our speed, which is fundamental this weekend. If you don’t have a good pace, it’s no good thinking about race strategies. And we were fast in all the conditions, especially in the dry and with used tyres like this afternoon in FP4. In qualifying, I did an almost perfect lap, and this gave me an immense satisfaction! We are ready for tomorrow, in any weather conditions: the bike is going really well, we are quick and this is the most important thing because our aim is to fight for the win.”
— Andrea Dovizioso (@AndreaDovizioso) October 28, 2017