Valencia MotoGP: Jorge Lorenzo sets early pace

1 of 1

Jorge Lorenzo’s bid to end his stunning 2010 campaign in winning fashion got off to a perfect start at the Valencia track in Spain today.

The new world champion, who is gunning for a ninth win of the season on Sunday, topped the opening day of practice at a mild but overcast Valencia.

The Fiat Yamaha rider, who was second behind Aussie Casey Stoner in this morning’s opening 45-minute session, set a best of 1.32.690 on his final lap to finish a comfortable 0.207s clear of Stoner’s factory Ducati GP10 on combined time.

Stoner still claimed second spot despite being marginally slower than he was when he topped the timesheets in this morning’s opening 45-minute session.

The 2007 world champion logged a 1.32.897 this morning, which bettered his 1.33.004 clocked this afternoon. He was the only rider in the field not to improve his time this afternoon.

Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team rider Colin Edwards claimed a surprise third place after he’d been down in 11th this morning.

The Texan clocked a best of 1.33.466 to shave off over 0.5s from his best this morning but he was still 0.569s adrift of Stoner.

The rapidly improving Marco Simoncelli, who just missed scoring his first MotoGP podium in Estoril last weekend, was fourth quickest, his best time of 1.33.468 leaving him just 0.002s behind Edwards.

Andrea Dovizioso was fifth with Ben Spies in sixth. The Texan is still limping heavily after he dislocated his left ankle in a sighting lap crash at last weekend’s Estoril MotoGP in Portugal.

He suffered another crash this morning but was as high as second in the final ten minutes of this afternoon’s second session. He posted a best lap of 1.33.528.

Valentino Rossi’s hopes of ending his glittering Yamaha career with an emotional win didn’t off to the flying start he’d have wished for.

The Italian had to settle for ninth with a best of 1.33.661 leaving him 0.971s behind Lorenzo. He was only a fraction quicker than his best time set this morning when he was fifth fastest.

Dani Pedrosa, who is still trying to hang onto second place in the championship, was down in 12th position as he continues to struggle with the recovering left collarbone he broke in practice for last month's Japanese Grand Prix at the Twin Ring Motegi.

Read the latest stories causing a buzz this week in Sport…

Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt