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Dry track for the riders in morning warm up sessions: Roberts, Harada and Elias fastest

Dry track for the riders in morning warm up sessions: Roberts, Harada and Elias fastest

Despite overnight thunderstorms, the track had dried out sufficiently for the bikes to go out on slick tyres this morning for the pre-race warm up sessions. The fastest riders in the 500cc were not from the usual group. World Champion Kenny Roberts was fastest out, with Nori Haga, Sete Gibernau and Carlos Checa the riders in closest proximity. If these riders can keep this pace up in the race, it promises to be one of the tightest races for a long time.

Pole position holder Max Biaggi was down in 11th place, the grid position of his rival Valentino Rossi, who made the 6th fastest time of the morning. With his front row partners, Capirossi and Barros taking the 7th and 5th fastest times, Biaggi is sure to face a struggle if he wants to make it to his third win of the season.

The 250 race will go ahead without current 125 World Champion Roberto Locatelli, who fractured an ankle in the qualifying sessions and was absent from this morning´s warm up. It was pole man Tetsuya Harada who once again lit up the track this morning, with a time over half a second quicker than compatriot Daijiro Katoh and third fastest ´home´ rider Jeremy McWilliams. With a great deal of fans already packing the circuit, he will be hoping to put in a stirling performance to please them. Alzamora who was second in Assen, was the fourth fastest this morning. There were falls for Klaus Nöhles and Alex Debon, although both riders were able to remount and ride back to the pits.

In the 125cc category, it was the now familiar sight of Toni Elias on his Telefonica Movistar Junior team Honda who set the fastest time of the session. Starting from pole position today, it is clear that he will be the one to follow in the race later in the morning. Behind him came a rejuvenated Masao Azuma looking for his first podium position since Jerez, and his first finish for three races. Behind Azuma was Ui and De Angelis with championship leader Manuel Poggiali making the sixth quickest time.

500cc, 2001

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