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Yamaha pair maintain desert pace

Yamaha pair maintain desert pace

The Yamaha Factory duo of Colin Edwards and Valentino Rossi were the front runners again in this morning's third MotoGP free practice session for the Commercialbank Grand Prix Of Qatar.

The Yamaha Factory duo of Colin Edwards and Valentino Rossi were the front runners again in this morning's third MotoGP free practice session for the Commercialbank Grand Prix Of Qatar. The session began at 10am local time under clear sunny skies, with no wind and slightly higher temperatures than yesterday at the Losail International circuit.

Continuing with the pace demonstrated in the opening two free practice sessions the Yamaha Factory team have clearly already found a good set-up with their 800cc prototype at the Doha venue and this time it was the Texas Tornado's turn to lead the way from The Doctor.

Edwards hot lap of 1'56.057 was 0.215 seconds quicker than Rossi's best time of the session and was also just 0.374 seconds slower than Casey Stoner's circuit record pole lap of 1'55.683 from 2006.

Almost half a second down on Edwards best time was Stoner himself, who suffered a light crash early on but remounted his Ducati Marlboro Desmosedici GP07 to complete the practice apparently unhindered.

The fourth fastest rider of the session, as was the case yesterday, was Rizla Suzuki's John Hopkins, who clearly does not appear to be overly affected by the wrist injury he carries from a crash on the same circuit three weeks ago during official testing and could yet cause a surprise at Losail.

Also demonstrating similar pace to that displayed in the opening two practice sessions were Repsol Honda's Dani Pedrosa, the fifth fastest rider with a lap of 1'56.686, and the Italian pair of Marco Melandri and Loris Capirossi, who sit just behind the young Spaniard on the timesheets.

Meanwhile Pedrosa's team-mate and World Champion Nicky Hayden stepped up his game this morning after raising one or two eyebrows with his relatively slow pace yesterday. The Kentucky Kid lapped in 1'56.918 on board his RC212V to improve his confidence ahead of qualifying later today as he begins the defence of his crown in the tomorrow's season-opening race.

Just after Hayden in the standings Rizla Suzuki's Chris Vermeulen and Spanish Honda LCR veteran Carlos Checa completed the top ten list of the early session's quickest riders, with Vermeulen improving notably to knock more than half a second off his best time from yesterday.

Tags:
MotoGP, 2007, Commercialbank GRAND PRIX OF QATAR, FP2

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