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Casey Stoner scorches in hot Indy practice

Speedcafe.com

Saturday 27th August, 2011 - 9:16am

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Australian Casey Stoner has continues continued his strong 2011 form in practice at Indianapolis

Australian Casey Stoner has continues continued his strong 2011 form in practice at Indianapolis

Casey Stoner has set the benchmark time during a hot day of practice for this weekend’s Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix.

The championship leader and factory Honda rider was the fastest man on a blistering hot opening day, with temperatures soaring well over 30 degrees.

Hometown hero Ben Spies (Yamaha) and Dani Pedrosa (Honda) followed Stoner in second and third in the times.

After setting the pace in the first practice session, Spies led the majority of the second session, with his best time of 1m40.918s an improvement of over two seconds from his first practice effort.

Stoner trumped that, though, with a 1m40.724s.

Pedrosa (Repsol Honda) who won last year’s Indianapolis GP, followed in third with a time of 1m41.205s, a vast improvement over his earlier best of 1m45.192s (10th).

Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha Factory Racing) also moved up significantly in the second practice outing, bettering his time by over three seconds, moving him into fourth.

Andrea Dovizioso was fifth quickest in FP2 with a best time of 1m41.536s, a three second improvement for the Italian from the morning, 0.163s ahead of Colin Edwards (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) in sixth.

Marco Simoncelli (San Carlo Honda Gresini Team) finished in seventh with a best time of 1m41.742s, followed by Nicky Hayden (Ducati Team) aboard the first Ducati.

Álvaro Bautista (Rizla Suzuki) was ninth and Randy de Puniet (Pramac Racing), who with eight minutes remaining had been the fastest Ducati of the session, posted a time of 1m42.339s to finish 10th.

Valentino Rossi (Ducati Team) improved on his FP1 time by just under two seconds, a good improvement but not enough to keep him within the top 10 times.

During the first session, Spies took the top spot with 18 minutes remaining with a time of 1m43.260s.

Casey Stoner (Repsol Honda) was fractionally shy of Spies with a 1m43.552s, with the Australian sandwiched between two Americans. Colin Edwards (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) stepped into third with a time of 1m43.574s.

Simoncelli was fourth from Hayden, who made it three Americans in the top five.

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