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Stoner Czechs in at blistering pace

Stoner Czechs in at blistering pace

Having utterly dominated the Laguna Seca weekend before the MotoGP summer break, Ducati Marlboro's Casey Stoner set down a marker in the first session of the Cardion ab Grand Prix Ceske republiky weekend, with a lap of Brno which was 0.662s quicker than any of his premier-class rivals in free practice 1.

Having utterly dominated the Laguna Seca weekend before the MotoGP summer break, Ducati Marlboro's Casey Stoner set down a marker in the first session of the Cardion ab Grand Prix Ceske republiky weekend, with a lap of Brno which was 0.662s quicker than any of his premier-class rivals in free practice 1.

On the 16th of his 21 laps the World Championship leading Australian 21 year-old recorded the pace setting time of 1'58.881 and ended the session more than six tenths in front of second fastest participant John Hopkins (Rizla Suzuki).

Stoner's Ducati colleague Loris Capirossi, who won at Brno last year and yesterday announced that he will be joining the Suzuki team which Hopkins of course leaves at the end of the season, was third on the timesheet thanks to a lap 0.884s off the pace.

Behind Capirossi on the timesheet, as he was in last year's Czech Republic Grand Prix, the Ducati rider's Italian compatriot Valentino Rossi (Fiat Yamaha) was fourth fastest – but The Doctor will hope for an improvement this afternoon in the second free practice session having lapped 1.136s slower than title rival Stoner.

Rossi's Yamaha team-mate Colin Edwards was fifth quickest, while Repsol Honda pair Dani Pedrosa and Nicky Hayden were sixth and seventh respectively, just ahead of Suzuki's Chris Vermeulen.

Kawasaki's Frenchman Randy de Puniet was the ninth name on the timesheet with a lap 1.518s behind Stoner's and just 0.001s slower than Vermuelen's, while a remarkable run from Toni Elias saw him notch the tenth best lap of the outing despite the Spanish Honda Gresini rider estimating his own fitness levels at 60% following his Assen femur break.

Tags:
MotoGP, 2007, CARDION AB GRAND PRIX ČESKÉ REPUBLIKY, FP1

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