Reigning world champion Casey Stoner escaped injury in a small crash on the final day of testing in Jerez.
The Aussie lost the front end of his factory Ducati GP8 on the entry to turn five as he posted the seventh best time on a Bridgestone qualifier.
Stoner blamed windy conditions for his failure to post a better time than 1.39.845 on a qualifier, which was 0.997s slower than the impressive best clocked by 2006 world champion Nicky Hayden.
Stoner, who won the BMW Z4 in yesterday’s special qualifying shootout, said: “I tried a couple of qualifiers and found one I really liked. The problem was I was out at a time when the wind was really bad. It dropped off towards the end when a few guys did their best time and I’m sure I could have gone much faster. I’m happy with my pace on race tyres though.”
The 22-year-old crashed for the third time in six days of winter testing at Jerez this afternoon but he said “I had a little slip off but it was nothing too big. I went into the corner and had a little problem with engine braking. We just needed to increase the engine braking a little bit because the bike was running into the corners too fast. I just lost the front but I’m not worried.”