Stefan Bradl has pole for the 2013 US MotoGP Grand Prix at Laguna Seca. The 23-year-old LCR Honda rider posted 1:21.176 to grab his first ever pole position, after finishing third and second in the morning's free practice sessions.
Honda locked out the front row of the grid, with championship leader Marc Marquez and Alvaro Bautista putting Repsol Honda and Honda Gresnini second and third respectively. Marquez's second place time was only 0.017s behind Bradl.
Where to Watch Live
The race is scheduled to start at 10pm BST. Live coverage is on BBC Two and BBC Two HD. Real-time Internet updates are available on the sport's official website.
Marquez led the way in the first practice session on Saturday, with 1:21.568 to lead Valentino Rossi on his Yamaha and Bradl, with Bautista and Britain's Cal Crutchlow rounding out the top five. The 20-year-old Spaniard is on an understandable high after romping to a second win of the season at the Sachsenring in Germany in the last race, in his MotoGP debut.
And he retained top spot through the second practice session of the day, clocking 1:21.680 to beat Bradl's 1:21.890. Crutchlow and Bautista finished third and fourth in that session, with Spain's Dani Pedrosa coming in fifth.
A word, though, about Pedrosa and defending world champion Jorge Lorenzo. The Repsol Honda and Yamaha riders were doubts for this race, with collarbone injuries at Germany. Following physiotherapy for Pedrosa and emergency surgery for Lorenzo, both riders were confirmed for the race pending medical evaluations, which happened trackside on Friday.
Pedrosa sat out the first and third practice sessions but produced blisteringly fast laps when critical and will start the race from seventh, with a best of 1:21.728.
Lorenzo, meanwhile, has kept a low profile through most of the weekend so far, with a best of 1:22.221 in practice and 1:21.453 in qualifying; he starts sixth, which should make the race very interesting indeed.
Ducati's Andrea Dovizioso finished eighth and Tech 3 Yamaha's Bradley smith was ninth with Nicky Hayden 10th on his Ducati.
The 3.602km Laguna Seca circuit consist of 11 turns. The circuit record lap belongs to Pedrosa, who posted 1:21.229 last year. The 2012 race was won Repsol Honda's Casey Stoner, with Lorenzo second and Pedrosa third. This year's pole position man, Bradly, finished seventh.
Marquez leads the championship with 138 points. Pedrosa is two points behind and Lorenzo a further 11. Crutchlow and Rossi round out the top five, with 107 and 101 points respectively.
Top 10 Qualifying Times from Laguna Seca:
- Stefan Bradl (LCR Honda) - 1:21.176
- Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda) - 1:21.193
- Alvaro Bautista (Honda Gresini) - 1:21.373
- Valentino Rossi (Yamaha Factory Racing) - 1:21.418
- Cal Crutchlow (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) - 1:21.420
- Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha Factory Racing) - 1:21.453
- Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda) - 1:21.728
- Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati) - 1:22.026
- Bradley Smith (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) - 1:22.075
- Nicky Hayden (Ducati) - 1:22.090
For more details on timesheets and race info, click here.