Stoner tops delayed Laguna Seca warm-up

Sunday, 29 July 2012

In the final morning warm-up of the Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix at Laguna Seca, which was delayed by an hour due to heavy fog, it was Repsol Honda Team’s Casey Stoner who posted the quickest time marginally ahead of Jorge Lorenzo and Dani Pedrosa.

The session went ahead under slightly improved conditions, albeit with mist covering the hills around the track and temperatures hovering around 13 degrees. And it was Stoner who stole the show by just one thousands of a second over championship rival Lorenzo, who suffered a fall in the final turn half way through the session. He walked away unscathed, and managed to re-join to set his fastest time, which pushed Stoner’s teammate Pedrosa into third. Monster Yamaha Tech 3’s Andrea Dovizioso and Cal Crutchlow rounded out the top five.

The session provided incidents from the start as Ducati Team’s Nicky Hayden ran off track, seemingly with a front brake issue, spectacularly bouncing off the air fence and somehow keeping his bike running. He managed to head out on his second machine and post the eighth fastest time. San Carlo Honda Gresini’s Álvaro Bautista suffered his second fall of the weekend in the same corner as Lorenzo just a few minutes before his compatriot. He was also unhurt in the incident.

Power Electronics Aspar’s Randy de Puniet finished top CRT of the morning in 10th, while Attack Performance’s Steve Rapp will not be able to race this afternoon, as he failed to set a time within 107 per cent off the top. Rapp and his team, which built the in-house CRT machine from scratch this season, will line up in Indianapolis in three weeks time to try once more.

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