Laconi tops Imola practice

Published: 23 September 2003

Regis Laconi has topped this morning’s practice session at the penultimate round of the World Superbike championship in Imola, Italy.

The NCR Ducati rider took his 998 to a fastest lap of 1:50.540, beating the Suzuki GSX-R1000 of Gregorio Lavilla to the top spot by 0.119 seconds. But his time was still well outside the circuit’s fastest qualifying lap of 1:48.336, set by Colin Edwards last year.

Newly-crowned champion Neil Hodgson finished the hour-long session in third place, 0.536 seconds down on Laconi, with HM Plant Ducati rider Chris Walker just 0.071 seconds back in fourth.

Steve Martin made a surprise appearance in fifth place with a time of 1:51.318 followed by James Toseland on the HM Plant Ducati and highest placed Italian rider Frankie Chili in seventh.

Hodgson’s team-mate Ruben Xaus took his Ducati 999 to a 1:1:51.625 to finish the opening practice session in eighth.

Times:

1 Régis Laconi 1:50.540, 2 Gregorio Lavilla 1:50.659, 3 Neil Hodgson 1:51.076, 4 Chris Walker 1:51.147, 5 Steve Martin 1:51.318, 6 James Toseland 1:51.507, 7 Pierfrancesco Chili 1:51.569, 8 Ruben Xaus 1:51.625, 9 Juan Bautista Borja 1:51.724, 10 Lucio Pedercini 1:52.673, 11 Mauro Sanchini 1:52.858, 13 Ivan Clementi 1:52.904, 14 Marco Borciani 1:53.050, 15 Troy Corser 1:53.235, 16 David Garcia 1:54.808, 17 Sergio Fuertes 1:55.248, 18 Alex Gramigni 1:55.539, 19 Horst Saiger 1:56.022, 20 James Haydon 1:56.101, 21 Luca Pini 1:56.384, 22 Walter Tortoroglio 1:56.391, 23 Giuseppe Zannini 1:57.519, 24 Simone Conti 1:57.652, 25 Gianmaria Liverani 1:57.975, 26 Luca Pedersoli 1:58.726, 27 Lorenzo Mauri 1:59.225, 28 Jiri Mrkyvka 2:01.174.

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