Valentino Rossi is far from being on Target for a happier 2012.
"Yesterday was nothing fantastic but a lot better, especially with the used tyre, so my goal was to qualify on the second row. I'm very far from that target though, as the problems that we had before were worse," the Italian lamented.
"It's very strange because we only made some small changes from yesterday, but the feeling was very different. After that we returned to yesterday's setting and I went a little bit faster, but it wasn't enough to significantly improve the result. I'm not sure what to expect for the race, but obviously, I hope to do better. Nicky made a different setup choice than ours and did a good session with both tyres, so now we'll also look at his data and try to do better."
Andrea Dovizioso played a major part in helping Yamaha enjoy a brilliant first qualifying session in the new 1000cc era, with the Italian sixth quickest. All four Yamaha YZR-M1 machines were inside the top six.
Dovizioso secured his place on the second row of the grid thanks to a competitive time of 1.55.857, although changes to the set-up his YZR-M1 machine didn't deliver the improve performance he had been expecting on soft tyres. The 26-year-old was still able to lap consistently inside the top six on both hard and soft compound Bridgestone tyres and he is confident he will be in the podium hunt in the 22-lap race.
"Tonight didn't go as well as I had hoped but it was a part of the learning process that we need to go through to improve for the future. I'm not going to be disappointed to finish sixth but I think we were a little bit unlucky tonight," Dovizioso said.
Dani Pedrosa will start from the row three pole position after setting the 7th fastest time. Pedrosa had electrical issues on Friday and today he had further problems that forced him onto his backup bike.
"We solved a little the issues we had yesterday with the electronics, but we had other problems today. I stopped in the garage to change the bike and it didn't start, twice. I lost a lot of time there and I had to take the other bike which I didn't feel comfortable with either," Pedrosa said.
Hector Barbera, 2011 Moto2 Champion Stefan Bradl and Karel Abraham rounded out the top ten.
Main Photo: Jorge Lorenzo
2012 MotoGP Qatar Qualifying - Losail Circuit 07/04/2012
1 Jorge Lorenzo Yamaha ESP 1'54.634
2 Casey Stoner Honda AUS 1'54.885
3 Cal Crutchlow Yamaha GBR 1'55.022
4 Ben Spies Yamaha USA 1'55.512
5 Nicky Hayden Ducati USA 1'55.637
6 Andrea Dovizioso Yamaha ITA 1'55.858
7 Daniel Pedrosa Honda ESP 1'55.905
8 Hector Barbera Ducati ESP 1'55.983
9 Stefan Bradl Honda GER 1'56.063
10 Karel Abraham Ducati CZE 1'56.198
11 Alvaro Bautista Suzuki ESP 1'56.521
12 Valentino Rossi Ducati ITA 1'56.813
13 Colin Edwards Suter USA 1'57.644
14 Randy De Puniet ART FRA 1'58.266
15 Aleix Espargaro ART ESP 1'58.520