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Spies on top in tricky first MotoGP™ practice at Estoril

Spies on top in tricky first MotoGP™ practice at Estoril

Most riders left it late to set a time at the Grande Prémio de Portugal Circuito Estoril in the first practice session, which saw Factory Yamaha Racing´s Ben Spies set the best time in awkward conditions.

In a similar vein to the first practice session in Jerez, the Portuguese MotoGP weekend started with a part-wet circuit, which was drying out throughout the session under partial sun. Only a handful of riders started the practice on wet tyres, until almost the entire field went out on slicks with ten minutes to go.

In the dying seconds, Spies set the fastest lap with a 1.40´813, stealing first spot from Ducati Team´s Nicky Hayden, who looks to be continuing his practice form from Spain. His teammate Valentino Rossi will be buoyed by his third place finish at the mostly-dry track, after struggling in such conditions at the previous round.

Repsol Honda´s Casey Stoner was just under a second off the pace in fourth, followed by San Carlo Honda Gresini´s Álvaro Bautista. Monster Yamaha Tech 3´s Cal Crutchlow was a further three tenths behind Stoner, and once again outpaced his team mate Andrea Dovizioso.

Behind him, Repsol Honda´s Dani Pedrosa finished eighth fastest, ahead of surprise inclusion Yonny Hernandez aboard his Avintia Blusens CRT bike. Rounding out the top ten was Cardion AB Motoracing´s Karel Abraham.

Yamaha´s current championship leader Jorge Lorenzo and Pramac Racing Team´s Hèctor Barberá opted not to set a time in the session.

Much like at Jerez, this session gave very little indication of actual form, as many riders will not have been pushing for a competitive lap.


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