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Stoner ahead of the pack on second evening under the floodlights

Stoner ahead of the pack on second evening under the floodlights

The second session at the MotoGP Official Night Test concluded with former World Champion Casey Stoner at the head of the timesheet.

Ducati Marlboro’s 2007 MotoGP title winner Casey Stoner was the man on the pace on night two in Qatar, finishing Monday’s session more than half a second faster than any of his rivals.

Stoner’s best effort of 1’57.139 was registered just before 9.15pm and put him 0.608s in front of Valentino Rossi, who briefly topped the timesheet at the midway stage of the session and eventually ended up second. Rossi undertook 51 laps in total as he tested a new electronics system, whilst Stoner only undertook five or six lap bursts - and a total of 37 laps - as he debuted a new swingarm and tested the condition of his troublesome left wrist.

"We have worked well and we’ve made progress with the set-up of the GP9 so it has been a positive day despite the difficult track conditions", commented Stoner. "Pretty much the same goes for the wrist – it’s obviously still not 100% yet but it is better than Malaysia and better than I was expecting for this test, so it’s looking hopeful from that point of view too. In general I am satisfied."

Third on the timesheet was Tech 3 Yamaha’s Colin Edwards with similar time to Rossi’s best, as he continued his good preseason performances, in contrast to his team-mate James Toseland who was last on the timesheet – three seconds off Stoner’s pace.

A late fast lap from Andrea Dovizioso with less than five minutes to go before the midnight conclusion of the test put him fourth overall, just ahead of Rizla Suzuki colleagues Chris Vermeulen (who crashed without consequence earlier in the evening) and Loris Capirossi, completing the top six.

Away from the timesheet the big news of the evening was a heavy crash at around 10.00pm for Dani Pedrosa at turn ten. The Spaniard, who did not ride at all on Sunday, has apparently aggravated an existing left knee injury and has hurt his left hand which he also damaged last year in Germany. He will travel back to his native Barcelona on Tuesday for further medical checks.

Following the Pedrosa crash there was a second red flag of the session when Ducati satellite rookie Mika Kallio suffered an accident on turn nine at approximately 10.20pm local time -the resulting oil spillage cleaned up quickly.

The Qatar test concludes tomorrow night with a third and final evening session from 6pm-midnght local time (4pm-10pm CET).

MotoGP Official Night Test at Qatar - Day Two, best times
1. Casey Stoner, Ducati Marlboro Team - 1'57.139 (37)
2. Valentino Rossi, Fiat Yamaha Team - 1'57.747 (51)
3. Colin Edwards, Tech3 Yamaha - 1'57.817 (41)
4. Andrea Dovizioso, Repsol Honda - 1'57.879 (60)
5. Chris Vermeulen, Suzuki MotoGP - 1'58.018 (24)
6. Loris Capirossi, Suzuki MotoGP - 1'58.264 (42)
7. Jorge Lorenzo, Fiat Yamaha Team - 1'58.400 (63)
8. Alex De Angelis, San Carlo Honda Gresini - 1'58.441 (53)
9. Nicky Hayden, Ducati Marlboro Team - 1'58.577 (54)
10. Dani Pedrosa, Repsol Honda - 1'58.619 (28)
11. Randy De Puniet, LCR Honda MotoGP - 1'58.936 (55)
12. Toni Elias, San Carlo Honda Gresini - 1'59.036 (56)
13. Yuki Takahashi, Scot Racing Team - 1'59.153 (65)
14. Marco Melandri, Hayate Racing Team - 1'59.195 (63)
15. Niccolo Canepa, Pramac Racing - 1'59.266 (36)
16. Mika Kallio, Pramac Racing - 1'59.764 (48)
17. James Toseland, Tech3 Yamaha - 2'00.234 (51)

MotoGP, 2009

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