Row 2 start for Andrea Dovizioso in the Grand Prix of Qatar after qualifying fifth on the Losail track. Jorge Lorenzo, ninth-quickest, will line up on row 3 for tomorrow

Qatar GP: opening round of the 2018 championship
Andrea Dovizioso will line up on the second row of the grid for the GP of Qatar, the opening round of the 2018 season, which gets underway tomorrow at 19.00 (17.00 CET) at the Losail circuit on the outskirts of Doha.

The Ducati Team rider, who finished the combined free practice sessions that lead into qualifying, at the top of the timesheets, took part directly in Q2, where he was fifth quickest with a time of 1’54.074, which earned him a row 2 start for the race.

Jorge Lorenzo, fourth after FP1, 2 and 3, improved his best mark in Q2 by four-tenths, the Spaniard ending up ninth quickest and on row 3 with a best time of 1’54.431.

Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team #04) – 5th (1’54.074)
“Today we found some strange conditions, because there was a lot of wind and sand on the track, and so it wasn’t as good as it was in testing and yesterday. As we might find these conditions tomorrow in the race, we worked with this in mind and my feeling continues to be good. In qualifying, when I put on the second tyre, I found myself in the middle of traffic, I slowed down and was not able to prepare well for my fast lap. Fifth place on the grid however is not bad and I think that we are ready for the race because we have a good pace.”

Jorge Lorenzo (Ducati Team #99) – 9th (1’54.431)
“It wasn’t a very positive day for me and tomorrow, if I want to be competitive in the race, we will have to improve a lot. I tried everything I could and I also think I set a good time, but we had a few too many technical issues and we were not able to get the best out of the bike because of these setbacks. In the warm-up tomorrow afternoon, we’ll try and make a few modifications that will help improve my feeling for the race.”
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