Marquez fifth-fastest in MotoGP after shoulder injury
CHESTE, Spain (AP) — Maverick Vinales of Yamaha took pole position for the season-ending Valencia MotoGP on Saturday, with champion Marc Marquez of Honda starting fifth after hurting his left shoulder in a crash.
Marquez, who claimed his fifth MotoGP title in Japan three races ago, set his time after being attended by doctors following a crash on Turn 4 at the Ricardo Tormo circuit.
Visibly in pain and favoring his injured shoulder, he was taken back to the medical center with about 10 minutes left in qualifying.
“I felt something strange in the shoulder,” Marquez said. “I tried to move it and felt a ‘clac.’”
The Spaniard said he thinks he partially dislocated the shoulder when he hit the gravel, but doctors said he was cleared to ride.
Marquez dislocated his left shoulder earlier this season and is expected to have surgery on it in the offseason.
Vinales was less than a tenth of a second faster than second-placed Alex Rins of Suzuki, with Ducati rider Andrea Dovizioso setting the third-fastest time.
Danilo Petrucci of Ducati Pramac will start fourth after finishing just over a tenth of a second slower than Vinales’ pole time.