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Biaggi resumes pole dominance in Australia

Biaggi resumes pole dominance in Australia

Max Biaggi will start from pole position for the seventh time this season today in Phillip Island after setting the best ever lap of the Australian circuit by a 500 in a time of 1´31.984. Biaggi´s achievement will come as little comfort ahead of the race which could finally see his arch rival Valentino Rossi crowned World Champion after a season-long battle between the Italian pair. Rossi starts from second place on the grid and knows that a place in the top eight will secure him the title, whilst Biaggi must finish in the top two to have any chance.

Alex Barros seemed to have wrapped matters up with some dominant riding throughout the session which saw him on top of the time sheets until late efforts from the two Italians. The Brazilian Honda Pons rider tried to react with another fast lap of his own but crashed out and was forced to settle for third spot ahead of the in-form Sete Gibernau.

Olivier Jacque had looked set for his first front row start of the season at the circuit which saw him clinch the 250cc title last season until Gibernau´s late effort. He will now start from the head of the second row in fifth place ahead of Loris Capirossi, Carlos Checa and Tohru Ukawa.

500cc, 2001

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