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Championship leader Marc Marquez claims third straight pole in Austria

Championship leader Marc Marquez claims third straight pole in Austria

Marquez got close to Andrea Iannone's outright lap record with a 1'23.235 but bailed out of his final lap as he saw Dovizioso was in attendance, trying to get a tow around the Red Bull Ring.

Spaniard Marquez topped the session with a flying lap of 1:23.235s at the Red Bull Ring in Spielberg ahead of the factory Ducatis of Andrea Dovizioso and Jorge Lorenzo, who completed the front row. We are same [as our] competitors.

"We found a very good balance with the bike". This year it looks like we're feeling better with the bike, better with acceleration.

"We tried to find different kinds of set-up, to understand which one works here in Austria, and honestly the team did a really good job - because since FP1 I go out and the bike was much better than previous year". "I'm very happy, I'm proud to be fast on this race track".

Marquez said last Monday's post-Czech GP test at Brno had helped Honda to prepare for the demands of the Red Bull Ring.

"We tried to find different kinds of set-up, to understand which one works here in Austria, and honestly the team did a really good job".

While Marquez excelled in qualifying, his performance overshadowed a largely muted showing from the rest of the Honda contingent.

Valentino Rossi (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) moved back up the order after a tough Friday to take seventh, just 0.003 ahead of Q1 graduate Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team) on a high-profile Row 3.

Crutchlow said Marquez has been "the king" of acceleration this weekend thus far, adding that it was remarkable how much the reigning champion has improved in that aspect compared to past year.

Crutchlow said Marquez has been "the king" of acceleration so far this weekend far, adding it was remarkable how much the reigning champion had improved in that aspect compared to a year ago.

Asked whether the acceleration gains were down to Marquez or the Honda bike, Crutchlow said: "I think it is a combination of both".

"It's normally Dani's strong point - and he is murdering Dani".