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Simoncelli on 250cc pole courtesy of qualifying expunction

Simoncelli on 250cc pole courtesy of qualifying expunction

Friday time enough to put Italian on quarter-litre top spot for Sunday race.

Grid positions in the 250cc class were, prior to this season, decided on the basis of combined times from two qualifying sessions. On Saturday at Motegi the starting places for the category were once again based on Friday times, as their crucial session was cancelled due to excessive rain.

With the time schedules for the day only useful for origami practice, Marco Simoncelli was awarded pole position for his full race return. The Metis Gilera rider had been fastest in the dry on Friday afternoon, some six-tenths of a second quicker than any other rider. The quarter-litre category’s reigning titlist missed the opening round of the season with a hand injury.

Hiroshi Aoyama starts from the front row at his and Honda’s home race, placing second ahead of Mapfre Aspar’s Álvaro Bautista and Team Toth rider Mattia Pasini.

Row two is headlined by current standings leader Héctor Barberá, with Raffaele de Rosa, Gabor Talmacsi and Mike di Meglio alongside him.

250cc Warmup will be held on Sunday from 9.15-9.45am.


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