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Catalunya test ends early due to thunderstorms

Catalunya test ends early due to thunderstorms

The reigning World Champion Casey Stoner left the Circuit de Catalunya on top of the timesheets again, as Tuesday´s testing ended earlier than scheduled due to storms.

Bad weather at the Montmelo circuit just to the north of Barcelona saw a second day of post-Gran Premi Cinzano de Catalunya testing brought to an early end at around 4.45pm due to a thunderstorm, with Casey Stoner sitting at the head of the timesheet.

There were just seven regular MotoGP riders in attendance and with the likes of Valentino Rossi, Dani Pedrosa and Jorge Lorenzo not in attendance, Stoner led the way from second quickest rider Andrea Dovizioso by less than a tenth of a second with a best time of 1´42.180 – not quite matching his own pace from Monday, possibly due to the unfavourable conditions.

The day had started slowly due to light rain in the morning, but there was plenty of work for third fastest rider Nicky Hayden to do as he worked alone on the new pneumatic valve engine, following Pedrosa´s departure on Monday with a back injury sustained in a highside crash on a standard RC212V. Hayden usually enjoys marathon test efforts, but was limited to 43 laps by the unseasonal Spanish climate.

Fourth placed on the timesheet was Chris Vermeulen, with positive comments coming from the Rizla Suzuki garage as he put in a best time of 1´42.555 on the ever-evolving 800cc GSV-R prototype.

LCR Honda´s Randy de Puniet rounded off the top five as he attempted to renew his confidence following yet another crash on Sunday, while there was a Ducati test rider in the form of Niccolo Canepa in sixth place, just ahead of the Italian firm´s satellite Alice riders Sylvain Guintoli and Toni Elias.

Additional test riders Aoki Nobuatsu (Suzuki), Olivier Jacque (Kawasaki), Erwan Nigon (HRC) and Vittoriano Guareschi (Ducati) also featured in the proceedings, with the aforementioned Canepa and Guareschi helping Stoner with the development of the new Desmosedici GP9.

Further details and analysis of the Catalunya test, in addition to exclusive interviews from the riders, will feature on in the next 24 hours.

Best lap times – Catalunya test June 2008 – day two

1. Casey STONER, Ducati Marlboro Team - 1´42.180
2. Andrea DOVIZIOSO, JiR Team Scot MotoGP - 1´42.222
3. Nicky HAYDEN, Repsol Honda Team - 1´42.555
4. Chris VERMEULEN, Rizla Suzuki MotoGP - 1´42.590
5. Randy DE PUNIET, LCR Honda MotoGP - 1´43.039
6. Niccolo CANEPA, Ducati Marlboro Team - 1´43.683
7. Sylvain GUINTOLI, Alice Team - 1´44.074
8. Toni ELIAS, Alice Team - 1´44.538
9. Aoki NOBUATSU, Rizla Suzuki MotoGP - 1´44.665
10. Olivier JACQUE, Kawasaki Racing Team - 1´44.938
11. Erwan NIGON, HRC Test Team - 1´45.181
12. Vittoriano GUARESCHI, Ducati Test Team - 1´46.163

MotoGP, 2008

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