Apr 6, 2002
© 2014, Roadracing World Publishing, Inc.
(This original, copyrighted material may not be copied, cut and pasted, published or otherwise reproduced in any way in any medium, which means, don’t post this on another website or BBS. If you want somebody else to see this, send, share or tweet a link or post a link to this page.)
Copyright 2002, Roadracing World Publishing, Inc.<BR><BR>Valentino Rossi qualified the new Honda RC211V V5 on pole for the first MotoGP race, scheduled for Sunday at Suzuka Circuit. But Rossi and the 990cc V5 four-stroke didn't romp away from every two-stroke; Loris Capirossi was just 0.183-second behind on a Honda NSR500 two-stroke. Shinichi Itoh was third-fastest on another Honda V5, ahead of Carlos Checa and Max Biaggi on Yamaha YZR-M1 four-strokes and Daijiro Katoh on another NSR500.<BR><BR>Former 500cc World Champion Kenny Roberts was 10th-fastest on his Suzuki GSV-R four-stroke and American teenager John Hopkins was 18th on his YZR500 Yamaha two-stroke after final qualifying.<BR><BR>The only riders to not improve on their first qualifying session time were Jurgen van den Goorbergh on a Honda NSR500, who went slower in the second session, and Pere Riba, who didn't record a time in the second session after turning a 2:15.140 in the first session, more than two seconds slower than the qualifying cut-off time of 107% of pole.<BR><BR>Times follow:<BR><BR>1. Valentino Rossi, Honda RC211V, 2:04.226<BR><BR>2. Loris Capirossi, Honda NSR500, 2:04.409<BR><BR>3. Shinichi Itoh, Honda RC211V, 2:04.435<BR><BR>4. Carlos Checa, Yamaha YZR-M1, 2:04.450<BR><BR>5. Max Biaggi, Yamaha YZR-M1, 2:04.456<BR><BR>6. Daijiro Katoh, Honda NSR500, 2:04.491<BR><BR>7. Akira Ryo, Suzuki GSV-R, 2:04.746<BR><BR>8. Olivier Jacque, Yamaha YZR500, 2:04.953<BR><BR>9. Shinya Nakano, Yamaha YZR500, 2:05.098<BR><BR>10. Kenny Roberts, Suzuki GSV-R, 2:05.122<BR><BR>11. Tohru Ukawa, Honda RC211V, 2:05.141<BR><BR>12. Norick Abe, Yamaha YZR500, 2:05.145<BR><BR>13. Alex Barros, Honda NSR500, 2:05.387<BR><BR>14. Steve Gibernau, Suzuki GSV-R, 2:05.977<BR><BR>15. Nobuatsu Aoki, Proton KR3, 2:06.094<BR><BR>16. Tetsuya Harada, Honda NSR500, 2:06.112<BR><BR>17. Garry McCoy, Yamaha YZR500, 2:06.193<BR><BR>18. John Hopkins, Yamaha YZR500, 2:06.302<BR><BR>19. Regis Laconi, Aprilia RS3, 2:06.379<BR><BR>20. Jurgen van den Goorbergh, Honda NSR500, 2:06.731<BR><BR>21. Jeremy McWilliams, Proton KR3, 2:07.130