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The World Champion Valentino Rossi only featured briefly on Sunday night in Qatar but Monday evening’s early proceedings saw him set the pace in the desert.
MotoGP title holder Valentino Rossi was the fastest rider during the first three hours of the second evening of practice for the premier class field at the MotoGP Official Night Test in Qatar.
After Sunday’s rain affected session Monday saw better conditions at the floodlit desert track but there were still relatively cool temperatures and some sand on the asphalt for the riders to contend with.
By 9pm local time it was Rossi who topped the timesheet with a 1’57.747 effort, as he tested a new electronics system on his evolving 2009 M1 prototype. The Italian registered his best time on the last of 39 laps undertaken by the midway point in the evening, having lapped just once on Sunday.
Casey Stoner may have sat out yesterday’s rain affected workout completely, but he was soon on the pace on the second evening, leading the way until Rossi’s hot lap of the Losail track. The Australian will be anxious to undertake a long run at some stage to fully test the condition of his troublesome left wrist, having only managed short runs thus far, as was the case for him in Malaysia.
The third quickest participant as of 9pm local time was veteran satellite Yamaha man Colin Edwards, whilst Rizla Suzuki’s Chris Vermeulen and Loris Capirossi completed the top five, as the Sepang pace-setters demonstrated their strengths again. Vermeulen crashed on turn six at around 8.30pm but was not hurt.
A full report will follow at the end of this evening’s session which concludes at midnight Qatari time (10pm CET).
MotoGP Official Night Test – Qatar - Day Two, best times as of 9pm local time
1. Valentino Rossi, Fiat Yamaha Team - 1'57.747 (39 laps)
2. Casey Stoner, Ducati Marlboro Team - 1'57.978 (18)
3. Colin Edwards, Tech3 Yamaha - 1'58.014 (29)
4. Chris Vermeulen, Suzuki MotoGP - 1'58.430 (18)
5. Loris Capirossi, Suzuki MotoGP - 1'58.908 (21)
6. Nicky Hayden, Ducati Marlboro Team - 1'59.194 (26)
7. Andrea Dovizioso, Repsol Honda - 1'59.225 (26)
8. Dani Pedrosa, Repsol Honda - 1'59.233 (18)
9. Niccolo Canepa, Pramac Racing - 1'59.266 (27)
10. Randy De Puniet, LCR Honda MotoGP - 1'59.270 (30)
11. Jorge Lorenzo, Fiat Yamaha Team - 1'59.301 (38)
12. Toni Elias, San Carlo Honda Gresini - 1'59.396 (35)
13. Marco Melandri, Hayate Racing Team - 1'59.493 (29)
14. Mika Kallio, Pramac Racing - 1'59.783 (33)
15. Alex De Angelis, San Carlo Honda Gresini - 1'59.785 (25)
16. Yuki Takahashi, Scot Racing Team - 2'00.152 (32)
17. James Toseland, Tech3 Yamaha - 2'00.234 (35)
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