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Stoner fastest in fiery warm up in Le Mans

Stoner fastest in fiery warm up in Le Mans

Casey Stoner (Repsol Honda) continued to show his lightning pace from the weekend as he topped the timesheets in a controversial twenty minute warm up for the Monster Energy Grand Prix de France which saw Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha Factory Racing) suffer a spectacular crash. Marco Simoncelli (San Carlo Honda Gresini Team) was second, ahead of Ducati Team’s Nicky Hayden.

Stoner’s quickest lap of 1’34.221 was 1.1s slower than his pole time from Saturday. The Australian claimed his first pole position in any class at the Le Mans circuit but the warm up was marked with controversy as race direction declared there will be an investigation between an incident that occurred between Stoner and Randy de Puniet (Pramac Racing) during the warm up. Stoner appeared to show his annoyance towards the French rider in a physical manner as they rode down the main straight after being hampered by the Ducati rider on one of his fast laps and for this “punch”, Stoner received a €5000 fine for his behaviour.

Reigning MotoGP World Champion Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha Factory Racing) didn’t have the best start to his race day after a highside on his out lap, after losing the rear in a right-hander which sent him tumbling into the gravel. The Spaniard was ok, but unfortunately for him and his team, his Yamaha was badly damaged and caught fire. The race winner from Le Mans in 2010 was able to make it back out on track on his spare machine but finished down in 11th.

Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda) was fourth, ahead of the second Ducati Team bike of Valentino Rossi. Andrea Dovizioso (Repsol Honda) who starts from the front row for only the fourth time in the MotoGP class, the first time since the Malaysian Grand Prix, was sixth fastest.

Monster Yamaha Tech 3 riders Cal Crutchlow and Colin Edwards were seventh and eighth, ahead of Ben Spies (Yamaha Factory Racing) in ninth. De Puniet was tenth after the fracas that took place earlier in the warm up.


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