In his home race, Dani Pedrosa -- onboard his Repsol Honda -- set the fastest time in day one of activity at the Circuit de Catalunya for the "Gran Premi Cinzano de Catalunya", seventh round of the of the FIM Road Racing World Championship Grand...
In his home race, Dani Pedrosa -- onboard his Repsol Honda -- set the fastest time in day one of activity at the Circuit de Catalunya for the "Gran Premi Cinzano de Catalunya", seventh round of the of the FIM Road Racing World Championship Grand Prix (MotoGP).
The time of 1.43:009 clocked by the Spaniard in practice one was enough to leave him at the top despite the fall he suffered during the afternoon practice at the Circuit.
"This morning went quite well and I was able to ride with a fast and consistent pace for quite a few laps, which was a positive start to the weekend. The set-up looks OK and, even though we still have to work on the tyre choice, we're in quite good shape", Pedrosa commented.
About his high speed fall early in the second one-hour session, the 21 year-old rider explained: "Unfortunately I ran wide in Turn Three, got onto the dirty part of the track with too much lean and fell off. It was my mistake and was actually quite a normal crash. I was lucky that I was not hurt, but unfortunately there was a lot of damage to the bike so the mechanics have a bit of work to do".
Right behind Pedrosa came Valentino Rossi -- who last weekend notched his sixth consecutive win in Mugello -- taking a time of 1.43:313 leading second session of the journey.
"We've made a good start to the weekend and my bike is already going very well. This morning was okay but then this afternoon especially we made a lot of steps forward with the tyres and with the setting. We've got a few different options for our tyre choice and we seem to have good grip in the long corners, which is very important at this track", Rossi stated.
"Tomorrow we will continue with our work and make a final decision about tyres. I found a strong rhythm straight away today and this afternoon I put in a consistent run of laps - almost a half-race distance - and things are already feeling good for Sunday. We still have some improvements to make with the setting and hopefully with a few modifications we'll be going even better", the Italian added.
Rossi will try to repeat his double victory of last year in Mugello-Barcelona stages after the performance of last weekend.
John Hopkins, on a works Rizla Suzuki, took a time of 1.43:389 on his last lap to improved his earlier best by 0.216s, to leave him 0.290s off Pedrosa's best at the conclusion of the day.
"It felt really good here today straight from the start. This is a track I really enjoy and have a lot of fun riding around here. As with every race so far this year the Suzuki and the Bridgestone tyres are working very well and Stuart has done a great job to set the bike up from the start, so I am fortunate enough to go out and be able to work on getting the right tyres for the race", Hopkins said.
Ducati Marlboro's Casey Stoner ended as the fourth quickest with the time set in practice one, while Honda Gresini's Toni Elias also recorded his best time in the morning and was fifth fastest overall.
Sixth spot belonged to Loris Capirossi in the second Ducati Marlboro, leading the way to Colin Edwards, Marco Melandri and Alex Barros, who wants to continue his good shape after the podium taken in the Italian GP.
It was another disappointing day for the current world champion, Nicky Hayden, as he only managed to get 14th best in the overall classification.
The MotoGP riders return to the Catalunya track tomorrow at 10.00, local time, before qualifying on the afternoon for the seventh Grand Prix of the year at 13.50, local time.