Alvaro Bautista could barely contain his delight after securing the first pole position of his MotoGP career for Sunday’s British Grand Prix at Silverstone.
It was the first time the Spaniard had secured the first position since his days racing in the 250cc series, having last done so three years ago in Italy.
But Bautista’s time of 2:03.303 proved enough to ensure that he start’s Sunday’s race ahead of Yamaha rider Ben Spies and title contender Casey Stoner.
“I’m so happy with this pole position – not only because of the pole but because we were really consistent again in practise,” said the San Carlo Honda Gresini rider.
“I’m so happy with the bike and the team because we worked so hard to get the bike working.
“I’ll just wait for tomorrow’s race, see what weather we have, and just put the maximum and try to make a good run.”
Stoner had to settle for third and revealed afterwards that he had struggled early in the session due to being unhappy with the set-up changes made to his Repsol Honda after morning practise.
That saw last year’s British Grand Prix winner have to make further changes midway through the qualifying session.
Stoner was unable to complete a full lap on the new set-up though, with rainfall inside the final five minutes seeing him dive into the pits for a new rear tyre.
However, he was unable to overhaul Bautista’s time and admitted the conditions had made things difficult for him.
Stoner said: “We didn’t have that much water but it was definitely treacherous. The wind is causing a lot of havoc and there are these little showers here and there.
“Sometimes it only rains on one part of the track, so we’re not really getting a good understanding of where we can push and when.
“We’re reasonably happy to be on the front row, but felt that we could have been more involved.”