Only one rider got within a second of world champion Casey Stoner during Saturday practice for the Valencia MotoGP season finale, the first dry session of the weekend.

The Australian, fastest overall in Friday's wet sessions, finished 0.663sec clear of Repsol Honda team-mate Dani Pedrosa in the dry, with Pramac Ducati rider Randy de Puniet a surprise third.

But the Frenchman was 1.124sec behind Stoner, with the third factory RCV of Andrea Dovizioso and Yamaha's Ben Spies +1.3sec in fourth and fifth.

Valentino Rossi, debuting a special helmet design in tribute to Marco Simoncelli, was sixth fastest (+1.6sec) for the factory Ducati team. Rossi's new helmet features Simoncelli's red and white colours at the front.

Alvaro Bautista, who led Friday afternoon's wet session for Suzuki, was seventh quickest in the dry (+1.690sec). Nicky Hayden (Ducati), Hector Barbera (Ducati) and Hiroshi Aoyama (Honda) completed the top ten.

With dark clouds gathering overhead, weather conditions for this afternoon's final qualifying session of the 800cc era will be tough to predict.

Saturday practice:

1. Stoner
2. Pedrosa
3. de Puniet
4. Dovizioso
5. Spies
6. Rossi
7. Bautista
8. Hayden
9. Barbera
10. Aoyama
11. Capirossi
12. Abraham
13. Crutchlow
14. Elias
15. Nakasuga
16. Hayes