Valentino Rossi appeared to have found the missing link in the set-up on his Fiat Yamaha when he bounded to the top of the timesheets in the morning warm-up for the Spanish MotoGP at Jerez.
The Italian – who starts from the second row after a troubled qualifying session when he lacked front-end grip – produced a warm-up lap in 1m 39.778s. This bettered by just 0.059s the best effort of his team-mate and chief rival, pole-sitter Jorge Lorenzo.
Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa was third fastest, from Casey Stoner on the Marlboro Ducati and Tony Elias (Gresini Honda).
James Toseland, who qualified 14th yesterday, 1.737s slower than Lorenzo, shrank the gap to the leader to 1.388s in warm-up, with a lap in 1m 41.166s. But this still left him only 14th fastest of the 18 starters.