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Ducati's Capirossi and Gibernau to start as top two in Jerez

Ducati's Capirossi and Gibernau to start as top two in Jerez

Ducati's Capirossi and Gibernau to start as top two in Jerez

Loris Capirossi and Sete Gibernau will start tomorrow's season-opening Grand Prix as the top two on the grid, whilst reigning World Champion Valentino Rossi will surprisingly start from the third row in ninth. The Ducati riders continued their excellent preseason form, which included their topping the timesheets nearly two weeks ago at the Jerez circuit, Capirossi putting in a fastest lap of 1'39.064 to take the pole position.

The Italian's team-mate Sete Gibernau will be looking to take the win at his home circuit, after last year's unforgettable final lap drama. Kawasaki's Shinya Nakano, so impressive at the final test, completed an all-Bridgestone top three on his boss Harald Eckl's birthday.

Honda will occupy the entire second row of the grid, with official factory riders Nicky Hayden and Dani Pedrosa ahead of satellite riders Toni Elias and Marco Melandri. Kawasaki's young rookie Randy de Puniet will start from eighth, despite being part of a large group involved in a crash caused by Alex Hofmann's bike. De Puniet, Rossi, Nakano, Kenny Roberts Jr and Elias all had an early problem with the oil left on the track from the German's bike, causing a large incident which affected the session.

Rossi, fastest yesterday in free practice, will start from ninth in his quest for a sixth consecutive opening-race victory. The Italian's third row start places him alongside team-mate Colin Edwards, who completes the top ten.

Suzuki were unable to continue their good run of results during the session, but will hope to push for high finishes with Chris Vermeulen and John Hopkins starting from eleventh and Hopkins twelfth.

GP de España
QP - MotoGP
Official Times

1. Loris Capirossi - Ducati Marlboro 1'39.064
2. Sete Gibernau - Ducati Marlboro 1'39.285
3. Shinya Nakano - Kawasaki Racing 1'39.526
4. Nicky Hayden - Repsol Honda 1'39.666
5. Dani Pedrosa - Repsol Honda 1'39.734
6. Toni Elías - Fortuna Honda 1'39.875
7. Marco Melandri - Fortuna Honda 1'39.932
8. Randy de Puniet - Kawasaki Racing 1'40.146
9. Valentino Rossi - Camel Yamaha 1'40.160
10. Colin Edwards - Camel Yamaha 1'40.181


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