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Qatar GP: Practice

Qatar GP: Practice

Qatar GP: Practice

The exotic oasis of the Losail Circuit has two year's worth of Grands Prix under its belt, and in 2005 the Qatar track produced three memorable races. Of course, the MotoGP Channel wants to give you the chance to relive all the action, so this weekend both the qualifying sessions and races will be available for your viewing pleasure. Today we set the scene as the grid positions are fought for, and tomorrow races from all three categories will be featured.

Loris Capirossi took his third pole position in as many weeks with a scintillating series of laps at the end of qualifying. He would be joined on the front row by Sete Gibernau and Valentino Rossi.

Gibernau, the winner of 2004's inaugural race at the Losail International Circuit, ended the session just 0.077 seconds adrift of the Italian and was the only serious challenger for pole, with recently-crowned World Champion Rossi a further 0.366 seconds back. Colin Edwards had held on to top spot for lengthy spells during the session but eventually dropped back to fourth place in the late push for times on qualifying tyres.

Edwards was joined on the second row of the grid by Marco Melandri, who set the quickest time in the morning free practice session despite still riding with 35 stitches in the foot injury he sustained in a crash with Rossi at Motegi less than two weeks before. Carlos Checa snatched the final second row spot from Shinya Nakano with a quick final lap that saw the Japanese rider relegated to seventh place.

In 250cc, Jorge Lorenzo fended off the challenge of Alex de Angelis to retain pole position in the second qualifying session. The Fortuna Honda rider, who missed the previous 250cc World Championship round as he was serving a one-race ban, was determined to shine at the venue where he clinched victory in the 125cc class' closest-ever Grand Prix finish in 2004.

Alex de Angelis was relegated to second by Lorenzo and would be joined on the front row by title contenders Casey Stoner and Dani Pedrosa.

Argentine Sebastian Porto, winner of 2004's inaugural 250cc Grand Prix at Losail, headed the second row from Andrea Dovizioso, Hiroshi Aoyama and Randy de Puniet, who suffered a crash midway through the session.

Mika Kallio (Red Bull KTM) came out all guns blazing for the second qualifying session at Losail, setting a new track record in 125cc. The Finn's time of 2'09.455 gave him his eighth pole of the season, alongside his teammate Gabor Talmacsi, with Mattia Pasini (Totti Top Sport) and another KTM, that of Julián Simón, completing the first row.

Championship leader Thomas Luthi (Elit Grand Prix) would start the Qatar Grand Prix from ninth on the grid.

Tags:
MotoGP, 2006

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