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Dovizioso stuns Pedrosa on first day of official 250cc tests

Dovizioso stuns Pedrosa on first day of official 250cc tests

Dovizioso stuns Pedrosa on first day of official 250cc tests

Andrea Dovizioso sent out an early warning shot to Daniel Pedrosa in the first official head-to-head between the two World Champions during today's official 250cc test at the Catalunya circuit in Spain. The quarter-litre riders took over the track from their 125cc counterparts this afternoon and Dovizioso, who lifted the minor category title last season and is preparing for his rookie campaign in the bigger class, was swiftly into the groove.

With current 250cc World Champion Pedrosa and last year's runner-up Sebastian Porto dominating the time sheets for much of the day, Dovizioso posted a late effort of 1'47.148 to confirm his status as a serious threat to the reign of his Honda colleague. However, the Italian was quick to play down his chances.

"I'm very happy, the bike is going well and I'm pleased with the lap times, but I don't think the fact I have lapped faster than Pedrosa today tells the whole story," commented Dovizioso, who is nevertheless aiming to become the third rider in consecutive seasons to win the 250cc title at the first attempt, after Pedrosa and Manuel Poggiali.

"Dani is still the fastest rider out there and remains the clear favourite for the championship. I'll be giving it my best shot to beat him though!".

Jorge Lorenzo, who has followed Dovizioso from the 125cc class to Honda's official 250cc ranks this season, crashed out today but escaped uninjured and set the seventh fastest time behind Aprilia trio Randy De Puniet, Alex de Angelis and Casey Stoner.

The notable absentee from today's session was Australian rider Anthony West, who is due to ride KTM's first ever 250cc road racer in the World Championship this season. Harald Bartol, Technical Director for the Austrian factory, was present to supervise their 125cc testing and revealed that it is unlikely the quarter-litre project will reach the track before the fourth round of the season at Le Mans in May.

250cc, 2005

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