The weather during morning warmup was unseasonably cool, again. However, this is likely a good thing since Race Day will be even cooler. It gave the teams perhaps a chance at guessing the grip level correctly for the race and qualification. Tyre degradation was an issue all morning long, and during qualifications. Neither the tyres or the cool weather seemed to phase Dani Pedrosa in the slightest, as he set a new track record of 1’40.271″ during FP2 in the morning. During qualifications, he set a new track record again grabbing the pole with a 1’39.730″ lap. As an aside, its been entirely too long since I’ve heard the words “Its a new track record!” voiced over the IMS public address system, but that’s a rant I’ll reserve for another post. The two Fiat Yamahas of Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi will join Pedrosa on the front row to start the 2nd Red Bull Indianapolis GP. Right behind them will be the American riders, Collin Edwards in P5 and Nicky Hayden in P6. Both riders have had their struggles this season, so it was good to see them qualify near the front. I know its too much to hope for to see Nicky on the podium again, but I expect he’ll have a top 5 finish.
In the 250cc class, qualifying was all but over with Aoyama on the pole followed by Simoncelli and Barbera when Mike di Meglio came from the back of the time charts to set a blazing, pole-grabbing, time of 1’41.341″ on his last possible lap. Remarkable accomplishment as everyone else’s tyres were shot and lap times were rising, di Meglio puts together one amazing lap to jump to P1. Will he be able to stay there during the race? I doubt it. My money is on Simoncelli taking the victory. Di Meglio is quick, no doubt, but I don’t have confidence in his consistency on this track. He can put together an outstanding lap, but can he do it 24 times in a row? I have my doubts.