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MotoGP Sepang: Last-lap Lorenzo takes pole

Works Yamaha's Jorge Lorenzo's final run of laps during today's Sepang MotoGP qualifying session was enough to snaffle away pole position from under the nose of title rival Dani Pedrosa by two-tenths of a second.

The Mallorcan rider looked set for a second-row start in Malaysia but came out with the softer of the Bridgestone comounds in the rear of his M1 to nick pole from Pedrosa with a 2'00.438 and then rubbed salt into the wound with a 2'00.334.

It looks like Lorenzo has solved the last-sector problem which has seen him lose up to a quarter of a second to the Honda man and may want to pass that on to his Yamaha stablemates.


Pedrosa, whose Repsol Honda was chattering its nuts off, had only stolen top spot from Monster Yamaha's Andrea Dovizioso with less than ten minutes left after the Italian had put in a lightning lap of 2'00.567 to go quickest. He is just a quarter of a second off the pace, though.

Still-injured Casey Stoner is at the head of row two and just a little under half a second down on his team-mate while Cal Crutchlow was third of the Yamahas in fifth spot, one ahead of Ben Spies.

Hector 'The Caravan' Barbera first got towed around by Pedrosa to set a quick time and then hitched on to the back of Lorenzo for his eighth-placed lap, one ahead of rookie Stefan Bradl on the LCR Honda.

Nicky Hayden and Valentino Rossi suffered identical crashes in this morning's final free practice session with The Doctor having a minor contre temps with the marshals.

The Ducati pair are ninth and 11th on the timesheets and 1.2 and 1.4s in arrears respectively with Alvaro Bautista, who walked away from a qualifying crash, in the middle.

Aleix Espargaro heads the CRT field with team-mate Randy De Puniet in second and Michele Pirro in third. Britain's James Ellison is fourth with Colin Edwards 18th.

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