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Simoncelli pips Pasini to provisional pole

Simoncelli pips Pasini to provisional pole

Simoncelli pips Pasini to provisional pole

Aprilia rider Marco Simoncelli was the fastest in the first qualifying session of the Gran Premio Marlboro de España, taking provisional pole position ahead of factory colleague Mattia Pasini.

"I'm very satisfied with today's lap times," commented Simoncelli, who took his first GP win last year at a rain-soaked Jerez. "I was faster today than the last time we tested here. I feel ready for the race, even if I still have to fix a few details with the chassis. In general, I haven't any major problem." "Last year, after my win at Jerez, I went through many ups and downs and I must prove that I have improved, so I am very focussed on this season as a whole," he added.

Pasini dominated the second half of the session but a late surge from Simoncelli left him in second position. Elit GP rider Thomas Lüthi was the best Honda rider, third fastest ahead of Red Bull KTM's Mika Kallio.

Also on official Honda machinery, Fabrizio Lai completed the top five, finishing ahead of Gabor Talmacsi and Hector Faubel. Italian rookies Raffael de Rosa and Lorenzo Zanetti both suffered crashes but managed to finish ahead of former 125 World Champion Manuel Poggiali. The other incidents of the session involved Aleix Espargaro and wildcard David Bonache.


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