Marc Marquez beats Valentino Rossi to pole at Brno
Czech Grand Prix - Qualifying

Marc Marquez beats Valentino Rossi to pole at Brno

Marc Marquez took his fourth pole position of the 2017 MotoGP season after edging Valentino Rossi by less than a tenth of a second in Czech Grand Prix qualifying at Brno.

Much of the second qualifying session was led by Dani Pedrosa, who set an early benchmark of 1m55.313s that stood until the final two minutes of running.

On his first run, Marquez slotted into second, 0.026s behind his Honda team-mate, but he managed to eclipse Pedrosa's time by more than three tenths on his second run, as he set a 1m54.981s to end up on top.

Moments later, Yamaha man Rossi jumped to second on a 1m55.073s, missing out on pole by only 0.092s, while a late improvement for Pedrosa still left the Spaniard 0.138s down.

Andrea Dovizioso was best of the Ducati riders in fourth, 0.460s behind Marquez and narrowly ahead of LCR Honda's Cal Crutchlow, who battled a reported back injury to take fifth.

The second works Ducati of Jorge Lorenzo was third after the first runs, but the three-time champion had that laptime deleted for exceeding track limits at Turn 14. He eventually qualified sixth, 0.571s off the pace.

Maverick Vinales was a subdued seventh on the second Yamaha, nearly six tenths slower than team-mate Rossi.

Q1 pacesetter Danilo Petrucci, Alvaro Bautista and Johann Zarco completed the top 10.

Aleix Espargaro crashed on his way to 11th place for Aprilia, ahead of Loris Baz on the Avintia Ducati.

Just missing out on a place in Q2 was Suzuki's Alex Rins, who moved into second in Q1 when he got a tow from Bautista and set a time just 0.006s slower than the Spaniard.

Rins was then shuffled out of the top two when Petrucci set a time two tenths quicker than Bautista, leaving him 13th ahead of Jonas Folger and Jack Miller.

The other Suzuki of Andrea Iannone didn't leave the pits in the closing part of Q1 and will start down in 20th, two places behind the lead KTM of Pol Espargaro, who took 18th despite crashing at Turn 12.

Aprilia's Sam Lowes also fell at the same corner, relegating him to 22nd, while the second Pramac Ducati of Scott Redding lines up 23rd and last.

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