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Rossi races to another pole in thrilling session

Rossi races to another pole in thrilling session

Rossi races to another pole in thrilling session

Valentino Rossi took his fourth consecutive pole of the season in a final qualifying session full of constant place changes, and an exciting battle for pole between the World Champion and Spaniard Checa who started the session on provisional pole, but was to end it just five hundredths behind the Italian. Biaggi and Ukawa qualified third and fourth respectively, just two tenths off the pole mark.

It was Loris Capirossi who was first to better Checa´s time of yesterday after 18 minutes. Ten minutes later, Rossi went to the top of the time sheets, but saw himself overtaken by Checa 24 minutes from the end. The Marlboro Yamaha rider improved his time again on his next lap to extend his advantage, but Rossi came roaring back a further two laps later to reclaim top spot. Checa left his box six minutes from the end of the session to try and capture his first pole of the season, and went first with just two minutes remaining, however five seconds later Rossi crossed the line to better the Spaniard and walk off with his fourth pole of the year.

Daijiro Kato had a place on front row going into the final two minutes, but was pushed out by the charges of Biaggi and Ukawa. Capirossi also lost places late, eventually finishing seventh, just behind the excellent Jeremy McWilliams.

MotoGP, 2002, Polini Grand Prix de France

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