Catalan MotoGP: Morbidelli takes maiden pole and leads Yamaha 1-2-3

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Franco Morbidelli snatched his maiden MotoGP pole position and headed a Yamaha 1-2-3 in qualifying for the Catalan Grand Prix, while Ducati's Andrea Dovizioso was only 17th
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The battle for pole at Catalunya raged between all four Yamaha riders at the end of Q2, with Morbidelli heading Fabio Quartararo and Valentino Rossi on the same day the latter's 2021 future with SRT was confirmed.

Rossi set the early pace on his factory Yamaha with a 1m39.881s, though this was immediately bested by Maverick Vinales with a 1m39.655s.

Morbidelli then took over top spot with a 1m39.110s to end the first runs fastest, while team-mate Quartararo was only seventh after making a mistake on the way into Turn 10.

As the session entered its final few minutes, it was the Yamaha quartet lighting up the timing screens, with Quartararo edging ahead with a 1m39.008s.

But Morbidelli dug deep on his final lap and was impressive in the final sector of the Catalunya circuit to fire in a 1m38.798s to claim his first pole in the premier class and his first in grand prix racing since his final Moto2 season in 2017.

Quartararo (below) went for one final lap just as the chequered flag came…
Lewis Duncan
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