MotoGP: Marquez and Viñales set up duel as qualifying goes down to the wire

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Spanish MotoGP rivals Marc Marquez and Maverick Viñales have set the stage for an epic duel between themselves at tomorrow’s American Grand Prix at the Circuit of the Americas, as qualifying went down to the wire between the pair.

The pair traded the top spot for much of the session, but simultaneous fast laps as the flag went out handed the top spot to Viñales for only a few seconds as Marquez completed his own flyer, maintaining a 100% pole record at the Texan track by only 0.130.

And while the pair were battling it out at the front, Viñales’ teammate Valentino Rossi made his own move for the front row, sneaking through to third. The Italian had a run-in with his teammate earlier in the session too though, coming together with the Spaniard and leaving Viñales not best pleased with his rival.

Rossi’s late charge demoted Dani Pedrosa to fourth, heading up the second row form another strong performance from Johann Zarco, while Jorge Lorenzo continued to improve on the Ducati to sixth.

Andrea Dovizioso leads row three ahead of another strong performance from the second Monster Yamaha of Jonas Folger, while a crash that denied him the chance of a front row wasn’t enough to demote Cal Crutchlow further back than ninth. Scott Redding rounded out the top ten.


Simon Patterson

By Simon Patterson

MotoGP and road racing reporter, photographer, videographer