Jorge Lorenzo boosted his chances of snatching the world title away from Valentino Rossi on the final day of the MotoGP season after smashing the lap record to claim pole position for Sunday’s decider in Valencia.
Lorenzo, who started the last round of the campaign seven points behind Rossi in the overall standings, clocked a time of one minute 30.011 seconds to break the pole record set in 2013 by Marc Marquez at the Comunitat Valenciana Ricardo Tormo.
It is the Spaniard’s fifth pole of the season and means he will hold the best advantage he could have got over Movistar Yamaha team-mate Rossi heading into Sunday’s race, where the Italian will start from the back of the grid.
Rossi was handed the grid penalty after clashing with Marquez during the last race at Sepang in Malaysia and this week saw his bid for a stay of execution rejected by the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
— Romain Grosjean (@RGrosjean) November 7, 2015
The nine-time world champion finished Saturday’s session in 12th spot after crashing out for only the second time this season.
Lorenzo, who has won all three races in Spain so far this season after taking victory in Jerez, Barcelona and Aragon, said in AS: “To be honest, it’s the best lap of my career. If I tried to repeat that again 20, 25, 30 times…I wouldn’t be able to.
“It will be important to make a good start (on Sunday) and try and get away from the Hondas.”
Repsol Honda duo Marquez and Dani Pedrosa will start immediately behind Lorenzo on the grid with Aleix Espargaro ensuring it was an all-Spanish top four. British duo Cal Crutchlow and Bradley Smith completed the top six.
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