He surprised everyone, starting with himself!
For his second weekend only in MotoGP, Spaniard Jorge Martin (Ducati-Pramac) took pole position at the Doha Grand Prix, on the Losail circuit in Qatar on Saturday.
"It's incredible !
I did not expect to be on pole, rather 4th or 5th ”, wondered the 23-year-old driver, who beat his French teammate Johann Zarco in qualifying, 2nd in the Qatar GP last week on the same track. , and the Spaniard Maverick Vinales (Yamaha), winner of this inaugural round.
"Tomorrow (Sunday) will be a day to learn, not my day to win", tempers however the one who still lacks experience in the premier class and on his mount, even if he has managed to "form a family in (his ) garage ”in just a month since pre-season testing.
"A Top 6 would be incredible," he continues, after his 15th place last Sunday.
But if the speed with which this first pole came is surprising, it was destined to arrive sooner or later: 2018 Moto3 champion, Martin is none other than the record holder of the year in this category (with 19 positions of peak in 2017 and 2018 alone).
It is difficult to imagine the Madrilenian to hold out at the forefront until the end on Sunday but his Ducati should allow him (as in Zarco for that matter) to benefit from a good advantage at the start (7:00 p.m.).
Vinales, on the other hand, will have on his side the consistency throughout the race observed last Sunday and the confidence offered by his victory last Sunday.
“I think Maverick has a better pace than us,” Zarco points out.
Having said that, “going on the front row with a powerful bike is an advantage, so we'll see what happens in the early laps.”
Quartararo wants to "fight for victory"
The Spaniard from Yamaha, for his part, cites the Frenchman of the Ducati armada among his main opponents, but also his French teammate Fabio Quartararo, 5th on the grid, and the defending champion, the Spaniard Joan Mir (Suzuki) , 9th.
Quartararo also wants to believe in his chances.
“I feel that I can fight for the victory, assures the number 20, 5th of the GP last week.
We have a great pace.
Of course, I have to admit that we lack a little bit of it but we always find something more in the race. ”
Also note the 4th and 6th starting positions of the official Ducatis of the Australian Jack Miller and the Italian Francesco Bagnaia, poleman last week, ahead of the Spaniards Aleix Espargaro (Aprilia), 7th, and Alex Rins (Suzuki), 8th .
The Italian Franco Morbidelli (Yamaha-SRT), in great difficulty during the previous round (18th in the GP), progressed and placed 10th in the qualifications.
Things got worse, on the other hand, for his new Italian teammate Valentino Rossi, sad 21st and penultimate Saturday.
As a reminder, the Spaniard Marc Marquez (Honda), who is still treating a fractured right arm suffered last summer, is forfeited at least for the first two races of the season.
In Moto2, the Briton Sam Lowes, poleman and winner last week at Losail, continues his momentum and will start on the grid on Sunday.
In Moto3, pole goes to the winner of the first round, the Spaniard Jaume Masia.
Qatar GP: Second chance for Quartararo