Misano MotoGP: Casey Stoner ends practice on top
Casey Stoner shrugged off the pain of a left wrist injury to continue his domination of the Misano GP this morning.
Having revealed yesterday that he was suffering a recurrence of an old broken wrist he first injured in 2003, the reigning world champion still easily beat his rivals in the third and final free practice session.
A best time of 1.34.365 set in the closing five minutes saw the factory Ducati rider beat Valentino Rossi by 0.711s, and Stoner’s time was 0.5s faster than he managed when topping the timesheets yesterday.
Rossi had slipped out of the three this morning before a late attack saw him clock a best of 1.35.076 in warm and sunny conditions. That was marginally faster than his best time from Friday as he held onto second spot overall.
Fiat Yamaha team-mate Jorge Lorenzo was the best Michelin rider this morning as he posted a 1.35.160 to claim third, with Chris Vermeulen in fourth a further 0.202s adrift. The Aussie though was the last rider to lap within a second of compatriot Stoner.
Tech 3 Yamaha rider Colin Edwards was fifth but 1.060s behind Stoner, with factory Honda rider Dani Pedrosa slowly building up his pace to claim seventh. Edwards ended sixth on combined times though as he was one of four riders who failed to better their times from yesterday.
British rider James Toseland was only 13th fastest this morning with a best lap of 1.36.047. That was slightly quicker than yesterday and he finished 13th too on combined times.
Factory Kawasaki rider John Hopkins was back in the saddle of his ZX-RR this morning, but he was last and 18th with a best time of 1.37.
Hopkins missed the whole yesterday with Kawasaki stating he was continuing to suffer from a rib injury first picked up in Brno earlier this month. Personal problems though have been cited as the reason for his surprise absence.
1 Casey STONER AUS Ducati Marlboro Team Ducati 1’34.365
2 Valentino ROSSI ITA Fiat Yamaha Team Yamaha 1’35.076
3 Jorge LORENZO SPA Fiat Yamaha Team Yamaha 1’35.160
4 Chris VERMEULEN AUS Rizla Suzuki MotoGP Suzuki 1’35.362
5 Colin EDWARDS USA Tech 3 Yamaha Yamaha 1’35.425
6 Dani PEDROSA SPA Repsol Honda Team Honda 1’35.520
7 Loris CAPIROSSI ITA Rizla Suzuki MotoGP Suzuki 1’35.534
8 Shinya NAKANO JPN San Carlo Honda Gresini Honda 1’35.549
9 Randy DE PUNIET FRA LCR Honda MotoGP Honda 1’35.628
10 Alex DE ANGELIS RSM San Carlo Honda Gresini Honda 1’35.739
11 Andrea DOVIZIOSO ITA JiR Team Scot MotoGP Honda 1’35.802
12 Toni ELIAS SPA Alice Team Ducati 1’35.853
13 James TOSELAND GBR Tech 3 Yamaha Yamaha 1’36.047
14 Sylvain GUINTOLI FRA Alice Team Ducati 1’36.089
15 Nicky HAYDEN USA Repsol Honda Team Honda 1’36.203
16 Marco MELANDRI ITA Ducati Marlboro Team Ducati 1’36.273
17 Anthony WEST AUS Kawasaki Racing Team Kawasaki 1’36.957
18 John HOPKINS USA Kawasaki Racing Team Kawasaki 1’37.346