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Stoner sweeps practice ahead of qualifying

Stoner sweeps practice ahead of qualifying

Repsol Honda’s Casey Stoner continued his charge, once again topping the times in the final practice session of the Gran Premi Aperol de Catalunya, chased by champion Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha Factory Racing) and Marco Simoncelli (San Carlo Honda Gresini Team).

Casey Stoner led the third and final practice session of the Catalunya race weekend, setting his fastest practice time of 1’42.691, which was 0.249s quicker than his best time the day before set in the variable conditions of FP2.

Lorenzo attempted to climb to the time in the last few minutes of the session but finished just behind the Australian by 0.122s. Marco Simoncelli remained in the top three times of the weekend but was dropped to third behind the Spaniard, with a best time of 1’43.130.

The sun finally came out for the MotoGP riders in the third and final practice session of the weekend. The track conditions improved continuously as the day and the track warmed up. Though only 15 riders were present on the track, as Edwards is out due to yesterday’s collarbone fracture and Dani Pedrosa is recovering from his shoulder injury sustained at the French Le Mans round.

Yamaha Factory Racing Ben Spies was fourth quickest, with Andrea Dovizioso (Repsol Honda) 0.348s behind the American and 0.937 behind the leader Stoner.< /p>

Nicky Hayden followed in sixth, the final rider within a second of Casey Stoners time, and for the third time this weekend was the fastest Ducati Team finisher, his team mate Valentino Rossi finished in eighth after crashing in turn five three quarters of the way into practice. Rossi was unhurt and was able to re-enter the track to finish out the practice.

Cal Crutchlow, the only Monster Yamaha Tech 3 on track, finished in 7th yesterday and today repeated the same finish, improving his time by almost a second from the day before.

Loris Capirossi (Pramac Racing) was ninth in the times, having crashed just minutes before Rossi crashed in the same corner. He also walked away unhurt.

Álvaro Bautista (Rizla Suzuki), determined to make a better showing after missing two rounds due to injury, finished in 10th place, gaining 1.246s over his best time of the day before.

Randy de Puniet (Pramac Racing), after a mid session run off, ended in twelfth position behind Karel Abraham (Cardion AB Motoracing).


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