Marquez comes out on top in duel with Lorenzo and takes his 6th successive win
The two Spaniards put on a great show in front of the Italian crowd, battling for the lead for several laps, only for Marquez to clinch a sixth successive victory in 2014 by 0.121s on the final lap. At his 300th Grand Prix the yellow sea of fans were willing Rossi to capitalise on any mistake from the front two, and although The Doctor had to settle for third by just under three seconds it was still a great ride for him from 10th on the grid.
With Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team) and impressive rookie Pol Espargaro (Monster Yamaha Tech3) the next two across the line – albeit more than 10 seconds further back – there were four Spaniards in the top five. Behind them Italians Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) and Andrea Iannone (Pramac Racing) also got great support from the crowd en route to sixth and seventh respectively, with Iannone making a brilliant start and leading in the early stages having started second on the grid.
The top ten was completed by Alvaro Bautista (GO&FUN Honda Gresini),Aleix Espargaro (NGM Forward Racing) and Yonny Hernandez (Energy T.I. Pramac Racing).
MotoGP: 6th pole for Marquez
Having taken MotoGP pole at the Gran Premio d˘Italia TIM on Saturday afternoon Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) heads the grid again for Sunday˘s sixth race of the year, with Andrea Iannone (Pramac Racing) and Jorge Lorenzo (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) also featuring on the front row.
A 1˘47.270 lap gave Marquez his sixth consecutive pole this year and his seventh successive top grid spot including Valencia last year, as his perfect form continued. An excellent effort from Iannone (+0.18s) saw him show his pace again to get his first premier class front row start, the perfect response to his two recent DNF results and an ideal performance from an Italian rider on an Italian bike at the Gran Premio d'Italia TIM.
Lorenzo got his third row one result of the year in third place, meanwhile, as he lapped a quarter of a second off Marquez.Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda) still holds the pole record at Mugello with his 1'47.157s time from last year - and he qualified in fourth position with a late lap 0.314s from today˘s pole.
A big crash on an out lap ended Monster Yamaha Tech3 rider Pol Espargaro˘s session early as he went down at turn nine and was clearly annoyed, but the Spaniard was unhurt and still ended up 5th on the grid.
A good qualifying result for Cal Crutchlow (Ducati Team) in sixth saw him outperform teammate Andrea Dovizioso who was eighth.
Sandwiching Dovizioso on the third row are Bradley Smith (Monster Yamaha Tech3) and Stefan Bradl (LCR Honda MotoGP) in seventh and ninth places respectively, with all three qualifying within 0.5s of pole.
Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) did not get the Q2 result he wanted as he qualified down in 10th for his 300th Grand Prix race.
motoGP: Marquez shines in morning before rain affects Friday afternoon practices
Some late timed laps in FP2 for the MotoGP riders saw Ducati Team˘s test rider and wild card this weekend Michele Pirro top with a 2˘05.435 in the mixed conditions, with only Nicky Hayden (Drive M7 Aspar), Alvaro Bautista (GO&FUN Honda Gresini) and Hiroshi Aoyama (Drive M7 Aspar) joining him on a relatively meaningless afternoon timesheet.
If it rains again for FP3 the faster times from FP1 will dictate Q1 and Q2 participation and World Champion Marquez led the way in that morning session with a 1˘48.004 best time, from Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) who was second by 0.382s.
As his 300th Grand Prix weekend got underway at the circuit where he has enjoyed so much success over the years, Rossi wore a special ˇ#thisforSIC58˘ message on his leathers in practice on the day that late rider Marco Simoncelli was inducted as a MotoGP Legend in a midday ceremony at Mugello.
Meanwhile, Andrea Iannone (Pramac Racing) and Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) made it three Italians in the FP1 top five which was completed by Jorge Lorenzo (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP). The day˘s top ten was completed Aleix Espargaro (NGM Forward Racing), Stefan Bradl (LCR Honda MotoGP), Cal Crutchlow (Ducati Team), the aforementioned Bautista and Bradley Smith (Monster Yamaha Tech3) courtesy of their respective FP1 times.
Following the on-track activities at Mugello on Friday, Valentino Rossi was presented with a surprise cake by the Safety Commission to mark his 300th career Grand Prix this weekend.