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Dani Pedrosa will start the Indianapolis Grand Prix on pole position after setting the fastest ever lap at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in qualifying today. Jorge Lorenzo and Andrea Dovizioso complete the first row of the grid, in a session that saw three riders suffer violent highsides on the same section of the track.
Spaniard Pedrosa took the third pole of the season for Repsol Honda with a stunning 1'38.813 lap, the first sub 1'39 tour of the weekend. The time came towards the dying moments of the hour-long session, when the track was at its fastest.
Yamaha Factory Racing's Jorge Lorenzo brushed off a difficult start to the weekend where he was off the pace in the free practice sessions, to steadily improve his times to post a fastest lap 0.1s off the ultimate time.
Andrea Dovizioso took his Tech 3 Yamaha to third, clocking 1'39.235, matching his highest grid position this season.
The grid positions were affected by three top riders crashing at the Turn 13-14 sequence. Casey Stoner was leading proceedings at the 10-minute mark when he had a massive highside, ending up being stretchered off to the ambulance and to the medical centre. Reports from the centre indicated he has a torn ligament in his right ankle, and it is uncertain if he will be able to start the race on Sunday. His best time was good enough for 6th place.
Yamaha rider Ben Spies was on form all weekend and was on course to beating the pole lap towards the latter part of the session when he had a similar off at Turn 13. He was able to walk away and get back out on his spare bike, but was unable to improve on his 1'39.279 time, which places him 4th of the starting grid.
Ducati's Nicky Hayden was next to go down at the same spot, prompting questions about the condition of the track surface at the corner. The American briefly lost consciousness and was taken to the medical centre where he was cleared of serious injury. The accident brought out a second red flag to clear debris, as did Stoner's earlier.
Stefan Bradl was impressive on the LCR Honda machine to chalk up a fifth fastest time. Briton Cal Crutchlow's Tech 3 Yamaha will line up on the third row behind Stoner, with Hayden starting 8th. San Carlo Gresini Honda's Alvaro Bautista who was the first rider over 1s behind pole, begins the race in 9th, while Randy de Puniet leads the CRT riders, lining up a strong 10th on his Power Electronics Aspar. Valentino Rossi will be disappointed with an 11th place despite a scary moment at the jinxed Turn 13.
The Moto3 qualifying session witnessed Sandro Cortese take pole from Danny Kent, while in the Moto2 category, Pol Espargaro underlined his dominance this weekend with the quickest lap.
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- 20/08/2012 08:19 - Indianapolis MotoGP Race: Pedrosa wins to close in on championship leader Lorenzo
- 19/08/2012 18:54 - Second win of the season for Nicki Thiim at Porsche Carrera Cup Deutschland