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Barros fastest in first free practice

Barros fastest in first free practice

Barros fastest in first free practice

Camel Honda's Alex Barros posted the best time in the first free practice session of the Grand Prix of Japan on Friday morning at Motegi. The Brazilian posted a best time of 1'48.620, less than 0.1s slower than the circuit record set in last year's race by Makoto Tamada.

John Hopkins was second fastest on the Bridgestone-shod Suzuki GSV-R, beating Ducati Marlboro's Carlos Checa by just 0.008s. Championship leader Valentino Rossi, who could secure his fifth consecutive title in the premier class by taking victory or second position in Sunday's race, was fourth fastest on the Yamaha, ahead of Italian compatriot Loris Capirossi.

Colin Edwards was sixth ahead of a Honda quartet led by Marco Melandri. The Italian youngster finished the session in seventh position and was followed home by Max Biaggi, Nicky Hayden and Sete Gibernau.

Japanese veteran Tohru Ukawa, who is standing in for the injured Troy Bayliss at Camel Honda, posted the 12th fastest time behind Kenny Roberts Jr. His fellow countryman Naoki Matsudo was 18th in his first-ever official MotoGP free practice session on the MD211VF Moriwaki prototype.


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