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United States GP: Practice

United States GP: Practice

United States GP: Practice

Today in the Re-Live section of, we look at the practice sessions for the World Championship´s long-awaited return to the USA´s Laguna Seca circuit. One of the most intimidating courses, returning after a decade long absence, a few surprises were bound to be thrown up before Sunday´s Red Bull USA Grand Prix.

At his home circuit, Repsol Honda´s Nicky Hayden gained his first pole position in his three year MotoGP career, aided by the local crowd and his experience of the track in AMA Superbikes. A phenomenal time of 1´22.670 put him first, with Valentino Rossi (Yamaha Factory Team) and Alex Barros (Honda Pons) completing the front row. Troy Bayliss (Honda Pons) headed the second row, alongside the Americans Colin Edwards (Yamaha Factory Team) and John Hopkins (Red Bull Suzuki)

In his worst performance since Japan 2004, Sete Gibernau only managed to qualify thirteenth, a second and a half behind Hayden´s pace, and two positions back from teammate Marco Melandri, who suffered a fall in the first quarter of the practice.

Max Biaggi was unable to perform as well as his pole-setting teammate on the Repsol Honda, and would start Sunday´s race on the third row. He would be on the outside of Carlos Checa´s Ducati, with ninth-placed Makoto Tamada on the Konica Minolta Honda further across.

MotoGP, 2006

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