News 2 Jul 2011

Gresini Honda's Simoncelli tops Friday MotoGP practice at Mugello

Italian Marco Simoncelli topped the time sheets on Friday at Mugello.

Italian Marco Simoncelli topped the time sheets on Friday at Mugello.

Marco Simoncelli’s last minute fast lap in Friday morning’s free practice put him on top of the pack for the day, ahead of Repsol Honda riders Casey Stoner and Andrea Dovizioso on the first day of action at the Gran Premio d’Italia TIM.

Dovizioso topped a rain marred second practice session. The top three riders were within one tenth of a second of each other in the morning session, with the Italian from Cattolica setting the fastest time of the day with a 1:48.987.

The second session was hindered by a light rain that was not enough to warrant rain tyres, and yet too slippery to push for fast laps on slicks until the last five minutes, thus leaving the MotoGP field unable to make the most of the second free practice.

Simoncelli’s morning lap on his San Carlo Honda Gresini Team bike was 0.040s faster than the best from Casey Stoner, who did not participate in the second session, and 0.101s ahead of Andrea Dovizioso for the day.

The fastest Yamaha in the session was Yamaha Factory Racing’s Jorge Lorenzo, who set a fourth quickest time of 1:49.251, just slightly more than a tenth of a second ahead of teammate Ben Spies.

Colin Edwards posted the sixth fastest time of the day on his Monster Yamaha Tech 3 bike, followed by Dani Pedrosa, who returns to racing after a three round absence due to a fractured a collarbone sustained at Le Mans.

The Repsol Honda rider won the race here last year, leading every lap from pole position.

Friday’s swiftest Ducati was that of Nicky Hayden, who posted a time of 1:50.203, while team mate Valentino Rossi suffered an electrical problem.

The Italian pulled off the track in FP1 and was assisted by track marshals who pushed his Ducati to the pits, leaving him 13th in the timings.

Hiroshi Aoyama (San Carlo Honda Gresini) and Álvaro Bautista (Rizla Suzuki) completed the top ten times of the session.

2011 MotoGP World Championship
Round Eight – Mugello, Italy

MotoGP Friday Practice:
1. Marco SIMONCELLI 1:48.987
2. Casey STONER 1:49.027
3. Andrea DOVIZIOSO 1:49.088
4. Jorge LORENZO 1:49.251
5. Ben SPIES 1:49.364
6. Colin EDWARDS 1:49.810
7. Dani PEDROSA 1:50.104
8. Nicky HAYDEN 1:50.203
9. Hiroshi AOYAMA 1:50.629
10. Alvaro BAUTISTA 1:50.658
11. Cal CRUTCHLOW 1:50.683
12. Randy DE PUNIET 1:50.729
13. Valentino ROSSI 1:50.780
14. Hector BARBERA 1:51.153
15. Toni ELIAS 1:51.868
16. Karel ABRAHAM 1:51.876