MotoGP – Pedrosa opens Aragón weekend on the pace

September 17, 2011

125cc, Moto2, MotoGP

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MotoGP:

Repsol Honda rider Dani Pedrosa started the Gran Premio de Aragón as the fastest rider on Friday, setting a best time of 1’50.281 as he laid down the marker at his home race. Pedrosa’s time came in the morning session, following which the afternoon practice for the premier class was delayed and then cancelled due to power shortages at the track. A rescheduled programme for Saturday morning will see the affected MotoGP and Moto2 classes received an extended practice session prior to the afternoon qualifying sessions.

Reigning World Champion Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha Factory Racing) was 0.449s behind his fellow compatriot as he continues with his attempt to reel in Championship leader Casey Stoner (Repsol Honda), who was third in the timings at just under eight-hundredths behind.

Two more Hondas followed in the order with San Carlo Honda Gresini’s Marco Simoncelli and factory rider Andrea Dovizioso (Repsol Honda) completing the top five, and the duo were the last two riders to get within a second of Pedrosa’s blistering pace.

Randy de Puniet (Pramac Racing) was the highest placing Ducati in sixth ahead of factory team rider Nicky Hayden, with Valentino Rossi eighth on the latest version of the Desmosedici GP11.1 at 1.395s off the top time. Colin Edwards (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) and Hiroshi Aoyama (San Carlo Honda Gresini) completed the top ten, with Ben Spies (Yamaha Factory Racing) 11th.

Moto2:

The Moto2 class experienced the same issue as their MotoGP counterparts, and were only able to run a morning session in which Marc Márquez (Team CatalunyaCaixa Repsol) was the quickest around the MotorLand Aragón layout.

The Spaniard posted a time of 1’54.857 to shade fellow countryman Aleix Espargaró (Pons HP 40) in the order by just 0.023s, with Andrea Iannone (Speed Master) completing the top three at three-tenths of a second off Márquez.

Scott Redding (Marc VDS Racing) was hot on the heels of the Italian in fourth, just 0.013s behind, with Alex de Angelis (JiR Moto2), Simone Corsi (Ioda Racing Project) and Anthony West (MZ Racing Team) all ahead of Championship leader Stefan Bradl (Viessmann Kiefer Racing) who placed eighth. Bradley Smith (Tech 3 Racing) and Yuki Takahashi (Gresini Racing) completed the top ten.

125cc:

The 125cc riders were unaffected by the problems and did manage to run two sessions, and it was Championship leader Nico Terol (Bankia Aspar) who led the way with a best time of 2’01.163 placing him at the top of the timesheet.

Spanish rookie Maverick Viñales (Blusens by Paris Hilton Racing) had topped the morning session and was second fastest of the day overall, at 0.365s off his compatriot, with Sandro Cortese (Intact Racing Team Germany) the only non Spaniard in the top five which was completed by Héctor Faubel (Bankia Aspar) and Efrén Vázquez (Avant-AirAsia-Ajo).

Johann Zarco (Avant-AirAsia-Ajo), Terol’s main challenger for the title, was 1.356s off his rival’s pace in sixth spot, with rookies Danny Kent (Red Bull Ajo Motorsport) and Miguel Oliveira (Andalucia Banca Civica), Adrián Martín (Bankia Aspar) and Luis Salom (RW Racing GP) all setting top-ten times.

The rescheduled Saturday programme will see the 125cc category’s final practice session start earlier and run from 8.45am-9.25am local time, with MotoGP running from 9.35am-10.50am and Moto2 from 11am-12.15pm. The afternoon qualifying sessions in all classes will run as originally scheduled.

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