French rider Sylvain Guintoli grabbed some of the limelight from Casey Stoner this afternoon when he caused a big surprise by clocking the fastest time in Brno’s second free practice session.
The Tech 3 Yamaha rider snatched top spot from MotoGP world championship leader Stoner at the death with a lap of 1.58.362.
His best time was set on a soft rear qualifying tyre, with Dunlop not restricted by the new tyre rules which limits Michelin and Bridgestone riders to a selection of just 31 over a race weekend.
His best lap moved him 0.206s clear of Casey Stoner, who had looked certain to continue his premier class dominance after the Australian logged the best time this morning, with MotoGP resuming following a four-week summer break.
Casey Stoner’s best time of 1.58.568 set with just nine minutes remaining looked good enough to give him the overall best time of the opening day in the Czech Republic.
At the time it moved him 0.224s ahead of American John Hopkins.
Sylvain Guintoli emerged from nowhere to leap into second place with four minutes remaining when he posted a 1.58.827 to get to within 0.259s of Casey Stoner’s best.
His last lap though secured top spot, and was 1.7s faster than he managed this morning. Dunlop boss Jeremy Ferguson confirmed Guintoli had used a soft qualifying tyre.
Stoner was second and quickest on race rubber, as his best time was 0.2s faster than he managed when fastest this morning.
Uncharacteristically, Casey Stoner didn’t make his usual lightning start and it wasn’t until 17 minutes had elapsed that he first climbed to the top of the timesheets when he clocked a 1.59.044.
That deposed factory Kawasaki rider Randy de Puniet, who had led the session with a 1.59.103 that he set just nine minutes in.
The French rider ended up fifth fastest with a best of 1.59.064 after a late charge from Ducati’s Loris Capirossi secured the Italian the fourth best time.
Loris Capirossi, who will move to Suzuki in 2008, posted a best of 1.58.969.
Valentino Rossi was sixth fastest after the Italian clocked a 1.59.176 to finish 0.6s adrift of Casey Stoner while best Honda was Dani Pedrosa down in seventh as he was a further 0.090s adrift of the Fiat Yamaha rider.
The Spaniard had been as high as third place early in the session as he finished one place ahead of Repsol Honda team-mate and reigning world champion Nicky Hayden.
Brno MotoGP Free practice two results:
1 Sylvain GUINTOLI FRA YAMAHA 1'58.362
2 Casey STONER AUS DUCATI 1'58.568
3 John HOPKINS USA SUZUKI 1'58.868
4 Loris CAPIROSSI ITA DUCATI 1'58.969
5 Randy DE PUNIET FRA KAWASAKI 1'59.064
6 Valentino ROSSI ITA YAMAHA 1'59.176
7 Dani PEDROSA SPA HONDA 1'59.266
8 Nicky HAYDEN USA HONDA 1'59.466
9 Makoto TAMADA JPN YAMAHA 1'59.494
10 Chris VERMEULEN AUS SUZUKI 1'59.508
11 Alex BARROS BRA DUCATI 1'59.738
12 Carlos CHECA SPA HONDA 1'59.857
13 Colin EDWARDS USA YAMAHA 2'00.001
14 Toni ELIAS SPA HONDA 2'00.271
15 Anthony WEST AUS KAWASAKI 2'00.398
16 Shinya NAKANO JPN HONDA 2'00.793
17 Kurtis ROBERTS USA KR212V 2'01.725
18 Ivan SILVA SPA DUCATI 2'01.854