/ Motorsport

Marc Marquez seals fifth pole in a row

Updated: Saturday, 17 May 2014 17:23 | Comments

Marc Marquez of the Repsol Honda Team took pole
Marc Marquez of the Repsol Honda Team took pole

Marc Marquez continued his dominance of this season's MotoGP with a fifth successive pole position during qualifying for the Grand Prix de France.

The reigning world champion, who is looking to make it five wins from five, set a new lap record at Le Mans with his first run, before going on to post one minute 32.042 seconds to take pole by almost seven-tenths of a second from fellow Spaniard Pol Espargaro.

Monster Yamaha's Espargaro, in his debut MotoGP campaign and at his team's home race, will start Sunday's event in his highest grid slot, having just edged out Ducati's Andrea Dovizioso by 0.021secs.

Marquez's team-mate at Repsol Honda and closest challenger Dani Pedrosa, who trails the 21-year-old by 28 points in the standings, could only manage ninth in a time of one minute 33.032secs.

Stefan Bradl is fourth for LCR Honda, while Movistar Yamaha duo Valentino Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo join the German on the second row.

British pair Bradley Smith and Cal Crutchlow are 10th and 12th respectively, both on the fourth row and over a second off Marquez's blistering pace.

Marquez, who this week signed a two-year extension with Honda, instantly set a new track record with a time of one minute 32.567secs - beating the old mark set by Pedrosa in 2008 - before going on to take a further half a second off his time throughout the session.

Italian Andrea Iannone, who had impressed in Friday's practice session, appeared to have come the closest to challenging Marquez as he moved up to second during the final stages, only for his lap to be disqualified due to taking a short cut.

But as it was, nobody could get close to Marquez, who appears set for another victory during Sunday's race.

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