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Stoner on pole for Assen MotoGP

2012-06-29 18:02

ASSEN, The Netherlands - Honda's Casey Stoner will start from pole in Saturday's Dutch MotoGP after posting the fastest time in qualifying on Friday.

Stoner earned the 41st pole position of his career - his 37th in MotoGP - by a margin of 0.015sec from Spanish team mate Dani Pedrosa. Another Spaniard, Jorge Lorenzo, was third-fastest in a session that was stopped twice because of rain.

SOFT PAID OFF

Pedrosa posted the quickest lap ahead of Lorenzo and Italy's Andrea Dovizioso before the riders were forced inside for the first time.

Stoner was ninth when the second rain break intervened but, in the final five minutes of the session, the Australian, using soft-compound tyres, surged up to third and then moved to the top of the standings with a time of 1min33.713.

Stoner is second in the overall championship standings, 25 points behind championship leader Lorenzo. In what will be his final race at Assen before retiring at the end of the season, Stoner is looking for his second win here to add to his victory in 2008.

Last year's winner, Yamaha’s Ben Spies, will start sixth with Germany's Stefan Bradl of LCR Honda fourth and Britain's rising star Cal Crutchlow fifth.