Bradl takes first MotoGP pole at Laguna Seca

LCR Honda rider pips Marc Márquez to P1 in qualifying at the Red Bull US Grand Prix by just 0.017s.
By Joseph Caron Dawe

Stefan Bradl will start a MotoGP race from pole position for the first time in his career, after topping qualifying at the Red Bull US Grand Prix.

The LCR Honda MotoGP rider took top spot from Marc Márquez in the final moments of the second qualifying run, putting in a lap of 1m 21.176s to seal pole position by just 0.017s from the Spaniard.

Bradl has been on the pace all weekend in the practice sessions, and will hope to turn a strong starting position into a first MotoGP podium result on Sunday.

It's really nice to be on pole. For sure it's one of my best laps ever!

“I put a lot of effort into this qualifying. I knew it would be tough, all the guys can take it a step further and go faster in qualifying,” said Bradl.

“I had a clear track when we put the second tyre in and I went for it! I'm really happy, it's really nice to be here and I will enjoy it. For sure it will be different tomorrow. We know we have the pace and we will keep going.”

Stefan Bradl LCR Honda MotoGP 2013 Laguna Seca
Stefan Bradl on his way to pole position © Photo courtesy of

Márquez was equally impressive, and after topping all but one of the four practice sessions that preceded qualifying he narrowly missed out on pole on his first visit to the track.

The Repsol Honda rider had a fall towards the end of the 15-minute qualifying session but walked away unharmed and held onto second spot.

“On the first tyre I was maybe able to be a bit faster and on the second tyre I pushed, maybe too early,” explained Márquez.

“I felt the grip was quite good, I went in a bit faster into Turn 8 and lost the front. I'm happy though, the rhythm is good and I feel good on the bike.

We are working well and tomorrow I think we can do a good result in the race.

Marc Márquez Repsol Honda MotoGP 2013 Laguna Seca
Marc Márquez tackles Laguna Seca © Photo courtesy of

Completing an all-Honda front row was Álvaro Bautista on the Gresini RC213V.

Row two of the starting grid will be an all-Yamaha affair with Valentino Rossi, Cal Crutchlow and Jorge Lorenzo taking positions four to six on the qualifying timesheet.

Lorenzo is back riding after missing last weekend's German Grand Prix, having re-injured the collarbone he broke at Assen. Also returning from injury after being unable to ride in Germany is Dani Pedrosa, who nursed his way through the practice sessions with limited track time before heading out and setting the seventh-fastest lap in qualifying.

Check out the full starting grid for the Red Bull US Grand Prix here.

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