10 things to know ahead of the Austrian GP

A stunning Q2 which saw Marquez and Dovi split by just 0.002 sets us up nicely for a fantastic race at the Red Bull Ring

With just 0.002 seconds splitting pole man Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) and second place Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) in Q2, the battle for victory at the eyetime Motorrad Grand Prix von Österreich looks set to be a repeat of 2017 – with Jorge Lorenzo (Ducati Team) potentially thrown into the mix.

Here are 10 reasons why you need to watch Sunday’s race at the Red Bull Ring:

1 - Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) has qualified on pole position for the second successive time at the Austrian GP. The Red Bull Ring is the second circuit of the current MotoGP™ schedule along with Buriram in Thailand where Marquez has not won in the premier class.

2 - This is the 49th pole position for Marquez on what is his 101st start in the premier class (48.5%) and the 77th of his Grand Prix career.

3 - Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) starts from second on the grid, which is his first back-to-back front row start since 2015 (France/Italy).

4 - Jorge Lorenzo (Ducati Team) starts third, which is his best result since he was also third in Germany earlier this year. This is his fourth front row start of 2018, one more than his whole 2017 season.

5 - With Dovizioso, Lorenzo and Petrucci, this is the first time there are three Ducati riders within the top four on the grid in the MotoGP™ class.

6 - Johann Zarco (Monster Yamaha Tech 3), who won the Moto2™ race at the Austrian GP in 2016, starts from sixth on the grid as the third Independent Team and top Yamaha rider. This is his best qualifying result since he was on pole at the French GP this year.

7 - Tito Rabat (Reale Avintia Racing) heads the third row on the grid as the fourth Ducati rider, which is his best qualifying result since he was the fourth fastest at the Argentina GP earlier this year.

Tito Rabat, Reale Avintia Racing, eyetime Motorrad Grand Prix von Österreich

8 - Andrea Iannone (Team Suzuki Ecstar), who won his only premier class race so far at the Austrian GP in 2016 from pole position, has qualified in eighth, which is his best qualifying result since he was fifth in Barcelona earlier this year.

9 - Maverick Viñales (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) has qualified 11th as the second Yamaha rider, which is his second successive fourth row start.

10 - After going to Q1 for the first time since the Phillip Island last year, Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) missed Q2 for the first time since the Catalan GP last year, qualifying in 14th. This is Valentino Rossi’s worst qualifying performance since he was 15th at Phillip Island in 2016 and his worst in dry-weather performance since he was also 14th at Indianapolis back in 2011.

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