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Stoner heads eventful FP2

Stoner heads eventful FP2

The Ducati Marlboro rider topped the timesheet in the second practice on Saturday morning ahead of Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi, in a session in which Ben Spies, Álvaro Bautista and Mika Kallio all crashed inside the opening five minutes.

Casey Stoner took the momentum from Valentino Rossi in the second practice session at Le Mans by setting the fastest time on Saturday morning, setting a time of 1’34.209 towards the end of the hour. The Australian shaved just under two-tenths of a second off Rossi’s time from Friday, in a session that had an extremely chaotic opening period.

Álvaro Bautista, Ben Spies and Mika Kallio all crashed inside the opening five minutes, with none returning to the track for the remainder of the practice. Bautista had a slow speed high side that does not bode well for his recovering shoulder and casts doubt over his further participation. Spies fell victim to the same type of crash immediately after as the lower 26ºC track temperature caused a few problems, as it had done for some of the 125cc riders earlier.

Monster Yamaha Tech3 rider Spies was stretchered off trackside and taken to the Clinica Mobile for an examination, where bruising to his left foot was confirmed. Kallio’s left shoulder was given the same diagnosis.

After the initial drama Stoner went on to head the timesheet, with Fiat Yamaha rider and current Championship leader Jorge Lorenzo 15 thousandths of a second off his pace to set the second best time of both the session and the combined practices. World Champion Rossi set the third quickest lap of FP2 with a time of 1’34.451.

Repsol Honda duo Dani Pedrosa and Andrea Dovizioso were both inside the top five times, with Nicky Hayden (Ducati Marlboro) and Randy de Puniet (LCR Honda) sixth and seventh respectively. Colin Edwards (Monster Yamaha Tech3), Loris Capirossi (Rizla Suzuki) and Aleix Espargaró (Pramac Racing) completed the top ten.

There was a minor fall with no consequence for Marco Simoncelli (San Carlo Honda Gresini Team) towards the end, the Italian setting the 12th fastest time.

Qualifying for the MotoGP class is scheduled to start at 1.55pm local time.


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