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Stoner fastest in second Silverstone practice

Casey Stoner fastest from Ben Spies during Friday practice (2) for the British MotoGP at Silverstone.
Reigning MotoGP world champion Casey Stoner showed few signs of struggling with the new spec Bridgestone front tyre by finishing the first day of the British Grand Prix on top of the practice timesheets at Silverstone.

Following this morning's rain, the afternoon session was held in dry and blustery conditions, albeit with a brief rain shower interrupting proceeding after ten minutes.

The rain sent all riders back to the pits, but soon blew over and the final 20 of the 45-minutes saw constant track action.

Ben Spies, who fell this morning, was fastest at the time of the rain and returned to the top with 14 minutes remaining.

The Factory Yamaha rider, looking to kick-start his season after a string of race-day disappointments, remained in command until Stoner moved ahead in the final three minutes.

Spies, who took his first MotoGP rostrum at Silverstone 2010, also improved at the end of the session to finish just 0.034s from Stoner's Repsol Honda.

Stoner's best lap was 1.2s off the inaugural 2010 (800cc) race lap record, suggesting plenty of room for improvement should dry conditions continue.

San Carlo Honda Gresini's Alvaro Bautista also led FP2 and finished a promising afternoon showing in third place, as the top satellite rider, 0.204s from Stoner.

Nicky Hayden, second to factory Ducati team-mate Valentino Rossi in the wet this morning, provided hope of dry GP12 form with fourth place (+0.562s).

But the same couldn't be said for Rossi, who dropped all the way back to eleventh and slowest of the manufacturer bikes in the afternoon.

The seven time world champion, who struggled badly in the dry sessions at Silverstone last year, was 2.334s from Stoner.

Last year's Moto2 winner Stefan Bradl put in two solid sessions to finish the day with 6-5 places, with Andrea Dovizioso leading the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 challenge in sixth.

Fellow Yamaha riders Jorge Lorenzo and Cal Crutchlow were the only other riders within one second of Stoner.

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