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Page last updated at 15:38 GMT, Friday, 26 June 2009 16:38 UK

Rossi powers to pole in Dutch GP

Dutch MotoGP, Assen
Date: 26-27 June
Friday 26 June: Qualifying: 1200-1500, BBC Red Button/online Saturday 27 July: 125cc and 250cc races: 0950-1205, BBC Red Button/online. Race live: 1240-1400, BBC Two/online

Valentino Rossi
Rossi finished 11th in Assen in 2008

Valentino Rossi claimed pole position for Saturday's Dutch MotoGP at Assen, giving him a great chance of recording his 100th Grand Prix victory.

The defending world champion and joint championship leader claimed pole with a lap time of one minute, 36.025 seconds.

Spain's Dani Pedrosa was second, while Rossi's leading title rivals Jorge Lorenzo and Casey Stoner took third and fourth places.

Britain's rider James Toseland will start ninth on the grid.

Rossi's pole is his second of the year and the for the 53rd of the eight-time world champion's career.

"I'm so happy, because this is a real pole position with a great lap at the end," said Rossi.

"It's always difficult with the traffic because I always have five riders behind me. We wait for Saturday and we hope for good weather."


Pedrosa claimed second despite still suffering from a hip injury.

"I'm feeling a lot better than in Barcelona. Still it's not 100% but I'm really happy," said Pedrosa. "I was lucky to get Valentino in front of me. He helped me a lot to get round."

Briton Bradley Smith had a disappointing day in qualifying for the 125cc race.

Aprilia rider Smith, currently second in the championship, claimed fifth on the grid, with Derbi rider Sandro Cortese taking pole, championship leader Julian Simon of France second and Spaniard Nicolas Terol third.

In the 250cc race, Hector Barbera is on pole, ahead of Honda's Japanese rider Hiroshi Aoyama and fellow Spaniard and Aprilia teammate Alvaro Bautista.

Dutch MotoGP qualifying result:

1 V Rossi (Ita) Yamaha 1 min 36.025 secs
2 D Pedrosa (Spa) Honda 1:36.110
3 J Lorenzo (Spa) Yamaha 1:36.393
4 C Stoner (Aus) Ducati 1:36.633
5 C Edwards (USA) Yamaha 1:36.760
6 L Capirossi (Ita) Suzuki 1:36.953
7 C Vermeulen (Aus) Suzuki 1:37.194
8 A Dovizioso (Ita) Honda 1:37.237
9 J Toseland (Gbr) Yamaha 1:37.323
10 R De Puniet (Fra) Honda 1:37.473
11 A De Angelis (Smr) Honda 1:37.637
12 M Kallio (Fin) Ducati 1:37.749
13 N Hayden (USA) Ducati 1:37.759
14 M Melandri (Ita) Kawasaki 1:37.948
15 T Elias (Spa) Honda 1:38.136

125cc qualifying result:

1 S Cortese (Ger) Derbi 1 min 45.430 secs
2 J Simon (Fra) Aprilia 1:45.441
3 N Terol (Spa) Aprilia 1:45.644

Selected others:
5 B Smith (GB) Aprilia 1:45.712

250cc qualifying result:

1 Hr Barbera (Spa) Aprilia 1 min 40.019 secs
2 H Aoyama (Jap) Honda 1:40.192
3 A Bautista (Spa) Aprilia 1:40.210

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see also
Matt Roberts' Assen practice report
26 Jun 09 |  MotoGP
Simoncelli confirms MotoGP switch
25 Jun 09 |  MotoGP
Rossi pips Lorenzo in epic finale
14 Jun 09 |  MotoGP
Lorenzo takes pole for home race
13 Jun 09 |  MotoGP
Simon unseats Smith in standings
14 Jun 09 |  MotoGP
Steve Parrish's MotoGP column
24 Jun 09 |  MotoGP

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