Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team RC213V) produced another herculean performance at the Red Bull Ring this afternoon, riding to his 70th Grand Prix pole position across all three classes: MotoGP, Moto2 and 125cc. Tomorrow the reigning MotoGP World Champion will chase a hat-trick of victories, after taking the win at the last two rounds in Germany and the Czech Republic.

The 24-year-old Spaniard’s performance proves the effectiveness of recent work undertaken by HRC and Repsol Honda. Last August Marquez had one of his toughest races of his title-winning season here, finishing in fifth place, but diligent work by HRC engineers has improved corner-exit acceleration, which is more vital than ever at this track, which is characterised by three slow-speed corners followed by long straights. At last Monday’s Brno tests Marquez’s Repsol Honda crew worked on a variety of set-ups designed to increase performance here.

Marquez bounced back from a minor tumble during FP4 today to stamp his authority on qualifying, dominating the session from its midpoint to the chequered flag. The three-times MotoGP king and former Moto2 and 125cc World Champion is currently riding a superb season, with three wins and three further podiums already. These results have given him a vital 14-point lead in the World Championship.

Riding at arguably MotoGP’s most picturesque venue – the Red Bull Ring is nestled in a beautiful valley in the Austrian Alps – Marquez’s best time this afternoon put him 0.144 seconds ahead of second-quickest Jorge Lorenzo, with Lorenzo’s Ducati team-mate Andrea Locatelli completing the first row.

Honda’s next best rider in qualifying was Marquez’s team-mate Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team RC213V), who came into Q2 from Q1 to secure a third-row start, with eighth-fastest time. The former 125cc and 250cc World Champion had some issues during free practice and had to go through the Q2 qualifying process. In the end he was happy with eightth, just 0.75 seconds slower than his flying team-mate. He goes into this race with three podium finishes from his last four outings.

Cal Crutchlow (LCR Honda RC213V) was Honda’s top independent rider this afternoon, going ninth fastest to complete the third row, following a tumble during an earlier practice session. The Briton is confident of a good ride tomorrow, so long as he can make a good start from the third row of the grid. Crutchlow is especially keen for a good result here, with his home race at Silverstone up next.

Jack Miller (Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS Honda RC213V) was 19th this afternoon, five places ahead of his team-mate Tito Rabat (Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS Honda RC213V). This track and its low-gear corners make wheelies a problem, and Miller and Rabat don’t yet have the aerodynamic aids recently made available to Marquez, Pedrosa and Crutchlow.

Marc Marquez

Marc Marquez 93

1st

“I’m very, very happy with his pole because here it’s very important for the first corner, and because so far we’ve done much better than last year. We’ve really taken a good step forward with the bike; we already had a good engine, but we were struggling with some wheelying. We worked a lot on this aspect and now I feel much more comfortable with my bike. We also prepared very well for this race. During the Monday post-race test in Brno, we tried many different configurations focused on this track, and that allowed us to start with a good base even on Friday morning. So at the moment it looks like our pace is very good, but as always, it’s the race that counts. We’ll try to give everything again, but it will be very important to choose the right rear tyre. Today we worked with the soft and hard rears, so we’ll probably try the medium in tomorrow’s warm-up and then make our choice.”

Repsol Honda Team
Dani Pedrosa

Dani Pedrosa 26

8th

“The key today for us was FP3 and the fact that for some reasons we weren’t able to set a good lap time when we fit a soft rear tyre in the final minutes of the session. I suffered a lot of spinning and wasn’t able to be fast enough. FP4 went better; we had a good pace, and also in Q1 I was able to do a fast lap time, but on a medium rear. I made it to Q2, but at that point I didn’t have enough new tyres left to make both runs on a new set of tyres. I ran on a bit of a mix and although we were able to recover some places, it wasn’t enough to get a good grid position. Getting off well at the start will be important in order to make it through the first three corners in a good position. We don’t know yet which rear tyre we’ll use in the race. We have to wait to see what weather and temperatures we’ll have. For now, the tyre choice is still open.”

Repsol Honda Team
Cal Crutchlow

Cal Crutchlow 35

9th

“I had a small off this morning, the back came around and I lost the front. It wil be an interesting race because I think all the tyres are possible race tyres, so we may see some riders use hard tyres, others medium and other soft. The other interesting thing is fuel – this track used a lot of fuel, so it will be interesting to see what kind of mappings people use. I feel I can have a good race with the top group, so long as everyone gets away cleanly.”

LCR Honda
Jack Miller

Jack Miller 43

19th

“My lap was pretty good and could have been even better if I had put it all together on my final run and I’m reasonably happy. Of course I always want to be closer to the front so now I just need to focus on the race and go for the best result possible. This always was going be a difficult track for us, especially the struggle with wheelie and acceleration, but we’ve improved step-by-step, even if it has been a case of too little too late.”

EG 0,0 Marc VDS
Tito Rabat

Tito Rabat 53

24th

“It was difficult qualifying session. In FP4 I did a very good job at the end of the session on a soft tyre and maybe this created some confusion because in FP3 I preferred the medium rear tyre. The soft tyre takes time to warm-up so for Q1 I just stayed out and did ten laps with a best time of 1’24.9. I know this is not normal for qualifying but it was better for me to work on my rhythm for the race.”

EG 0,0 Marc VDS
NeroGiardini Motorrad Grand Prix von Österreich

Red Bull Ring – Spielberg, Austria

MotoGP 2017, Round 11

Saturday 12 Aug 2017, 17:44 UTC
# Rider Num Nationality Nat. Team Constructor Constr. Time/Gap
1 Marc Marquez 93 SPA Repsol Honda Team Honda 1'23.235
2 Andrea Dovizioso 4 ITA Ducati Team Ducati +1'23.379
3 Jorge Lorenzo 99 SPA Ducati Team Ducati +1'23.621
4 Maverick Viñales 25 SPA Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha +1'23.754
5 Danilo Petrucci 9 ITA Octo Pramac Yakhnich Ducati +1'23.780
6 Johann Zarco 5 FRA Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Yamaha +1'23.879
7 Valentino Rossi 46 ITA Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha +1'23.982
8 Dani Pedrosa 26 SPA Repsol Honda Team Honda +1'23.985
9 Cal Crutchlow 35 GBR LCR Honda Honda +1'24.024
10 Andrea Iannone 29 ITA Team SUZUKI ECSTAR Suzuki +1'24.185
11 Karel Abraham 17 CZE Pull&Bear Aspar Team Ducati +1'24.220
12 Loris Baz 76 FRA Avintia Racing Ducati +1'24.483
13 Jonas Folger 94 GER Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Yamaha +1'24.015
14 Hector Barbera 8 SPA Avintia Racing Ducati +1'24.036
15 Scott Redding 45 GBR Octo Pramac Yakhnich Ducati +1'24.037
16 Pol Espargaro 44 SPA Red Bull KTM Factory Racing KTM +1'24.101
17 Alvaro Bautista 19 SPA Pull&Bear Aspar Team Ducati +1'24.202
18 Mika Kallio 36 FIN Red Bull KTM Factory Racing KTM +1'24.261
19 Jack Miller 43 AUS EG 0,0 Marc VDS Honda +1'24.321
20 Aleix Espargaro 41 SPA Aprilia Racing Team Gresini Aprilia +1'24.447
21 Alex Rins 42 SPA Team SUZUKI ECSTAR Suzuki +1'24.448
22 Bradley Smith 38 GBR Red Bull KTM Factory Racing KTM +1'24.530
23 Sam Lowes 22 GBR Aprilia Racing Team Gresini Aprilia +1'24.852
24 Tito Rabat 53 SPA EG 0,0 Marc VDS Honda +1'24.900
Friday 11 Aug 2017, 15:42 UTC
# Rider Num Nationality Nat. Team Constructor Constr. Time/Gap
1 Andrea Dovizioso 4 ITA Ducati Team Ducati 1'24.046
2 Maverick Viñales 25 SPA Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha +1'24.280
3 Dani Pedrosa 26 SPA Repsol Honda Team Honda +1'24.474
4 Johann Zarco 5 FRA Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Yamaha +1'24.522
5 Jorge Lorenzo 99 SPA Ducati Team Ducati +1'24.616
6 Marc Marquez 93 SPA Repsol Honda Team Honda +1'24.649
7 Cal Crutchlow 35 GBR LCR Honda Honda +1'24.668
8 Aleix Espargaro 41 SPA Aprilia Racing Team Gresini Aprilia +1'24.726
9 Scott Redding 45 GBR Octo Pramac Yakhnich Ducati +1'24.765
10 Alvaro Bautista 19 SPA Pull&Bear Aspar Team Ducati +1'24.780
11 Pol Espargaro 44 SPA Red Bull KTM Factory Racing KTM +1'24.859
12 Valentino Rossi 46 ITA Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha +1'24.883
13 Loris Baz 76 FRA Avintia Racing Ducati +1'24.925
14 Danilo Petrucci 9 ITA Octo Pramac Yakhnich Ducati +1'24.935
15 Jonas Folger 94 GER Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Yamaha +1'24.992
16 Andrea Iannone 29 ITA Team SUZUKI ECSTAR Suzuki +1'25.218
17 Hector Barbera 8 SPA Avintia Racing Ducati +1'25.258
18 Sam Lowes 22 GBR Aprilia Racing Team Gresini Aprilia +1'25.270
19 Mika Kallio 36 FIN Red Bull KTM Factory Racing KTM +1'25.320
20 Jack Miller 43 AUS EG 0,0 Marc VDS Honda +1'25.335
21 Karel Abraham 17 CZE Pull&Bear Aspar Team Ducati +1'25.369
22 Alex Rins 42 SPA Team SUZUKI ECSTAR Suzuki +1'25.452
23 Tito Rabat 53 SPA EG 0,0 Marc VDS Honda +1'25.616
24 Bradley Smith 38 GBR Red Bull KTM Factory Racing KTM +1'25.664
Rider Standings
Sunday, 6 Aug 2017 - Open world standings grid
# Rider Num Nationality Nat. Points Pts. Team Constructor Constr.
1 Marc MARQUEZ 93 SPA 154 Repsol Honda Team Honda
2 Maverick VIñALES 25 SPA 140 Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha
3 Andrea DOVIZIOSO 4 ITA 133 Ducati Team Ducati
4 Valentino ROSSI 46 ITA 132 Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Yamaha
5 Dani PEDROSA 26 SPA 123 Repsol Honda Team Honda
6 Johann ZARCO 5 FRA 88 Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Yamaha
7 Jonas FOLGER 94 GER 77 Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Yamaha
8 Danilo PETRUCCI 9 ITA 75 Octo Pramac Yakhnich Ducati
9 Cal CRUTCHLOW 35 GBR 75 LCR Honda Honda
10 Jorge LORENZO 99 SPA 66 Ducati Team Ducati
11 Alvaro BAUTISTA 19 SPA 44 Pull&Bear Aspar Team Ducati
12 Jack MILLER 43 AUS 43 EG 0,0 Marc VDS Honda
13 Aleix ESPARGARO 41 SPA 40 Aprilia Racing Team Gresini Aprilia
14 Scott REDDING 45 GBR 33 Octo Pramac Yakhnich Ducati
15 Loris BAZ 76 FRA 31 Avintia Racing Ducati
16 Andrea IANNONE 29 ITA 29 Team SUZUKI ECSTAR Suzuki
17 Karel ABRAHAM 17 CZE 23 Pull&Bear Aspar Team Ducati
18 Tito RABAT 53 SPA 23 EG 0,0 Marc VDS Honda
19 Hector BARBERA 8 SPA 21 Avintia Racing Ducati
20 Pol ESPARGARO 44 SPA 19 Red Bull KTM Factory Racing KTM
21 Alex RINS 42 SPA 12 Team SUZUKI ECSTAR Suzuki
22 Bradley SMITH 38 GBR 9 Red Bull KTM Factory Racing KTM
23 Michele PIRRO 51 ITA 7 Ducati Team Ducati
24 Sam LOWES 22 GBR 2 Aprilia Racing Team Gresini Aprilia
25 Sylvain GUINTOLI 50 FRA 1 Team SUZUKI ECSTAR Suzuki