Valentino Rossi took his first pole position of the 2016 MotoGP season at Jerez today.
Rossi pushed hard towards the end of the Qualifying session to snatch pole away from Marc Marquez and Jorge Lorenzo, who had previous been trading the pole between them. Lorenzo ended up in second place with Marquez taking third.
Valentino attributed his pole position to the progress that he and the Yamaha team are making with the new Michelin tyres.
“We work a lot because last year we struggled too much during qualifying,” said Rossi. “This year with the Michelins I feel better and we started twice on the front row already, but pole position is different – especially here in Jerez.
“I know that I can be competitive but in these past races, we had some problems, I did the mistake in Austin, so we didn’t take what we expect. So we have to go to start now.
“For sure tomorrow will be very very hard with Lorenzo and Marquez, but we are there. We can fight.”
“At the end, starting from pole position is important – but it’s nothing,” he added. “The race will be tomorrow and it will be very difficult.
“I think Marquez and Lorenzo will have great pace. But we work very well from yesterday morning, I feel good with the bike, and I think we can fight.”