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Pedrosa top final practice at Assen

Dani Pedrosa fastest during Friday free practice for the Dutch MotoGP at Assen.
Dani Pedrosa moved to the top of the timesheets during Friday morning's final practice session for the Dutch MotoGP at Assen.

The session was split by a brief rain shower after ten minutes, which caused Pedrosa's Repsol Honda team-mate and reigning MotoGP champion Casey Stoner to highside at turn nine (see separate story).

Although the rain soon departed, it wasn't until the final ten minutes that the track dried enough to make lap times competitive again.

Pedrosa dominated the closing stages, replacing Yamaha's title leader Jorge Lorenzo at the head of the timesheets with the fastest lap of the event, then improving twice more by the close of the 45-minutes.

The Spaniard finished 0.161s ahead of Lorenzo, with the on-form Alvaro Bautista the top satellite rider in third for Honda Gresini. All three set their best laps of the event so far this morning, using the softer rear tyre.

Yamaha Tech 3 team-mates Cal Crutchlow and Andrea Dovizioso took fourth and fifth with a sore Stoner, who fell on his third lap, returning to set the sixth fastest lap time (+0.790s).

Honda LCR rookie Stefan Bradl was seventh, with Nicky Hayden - who spoke on Thursday about the uncertainly over his Ducati future - the top Desmosedici rider in eighth (+0.906s).

Pramac's Hector Barbera was the first rider outside of one-second from Pedrosa, with Thursday pace setter Ben Spies a cautious tenth.

Valentino Rossi was eleventh on the second factory Ducati, with top CRT ride Aleix Espargaro just 0.191s behind for Aspar Aprilia.

The Assen circuit is the only survivor from the inaugural 1949 World Championship calendar. The Dutch TT is traditionally held on the last Saturday in June, Sunday racing having originally been frowned upon for religious reasons.

Qualifying takes place this afternoon.

Friday practice:

1. Dani Pedrosa
2. Jorge Lorenzo
3. Alvaro Bautista
4. Cal Crutchlow
5. Andrea Dovizioso
6. Casey Stoner
7. Stefan Bradl
8. Nicky Hayden
9. Hector Barbera
10. Ben Spies
11. Valentino Rossi
12. Aleix Espargaro
13. Randy De Puniet
14. Karel Abraham
15. Michele Pirro
16. Yonny Hernandez
17. Danilo Petrucci
18. James Ellison
19. Mattia Pasini
20. Ivan Silva
21. Colin Edwards

Related Pictures

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Pedrosa, MotoGP,  Dutch MotoGP 2012
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Kimi - Unregistered

June 29, 2012 12:09 PM

why need to insult rossi?this was only practice.. i'm pretty sure he will be ahead of hayden in the race or maybe not.. by the way, i'm not rossi fan at all..but i'm just tired of some haters or fanboys keep insulting the other riders.. you guys should just stop watch moto gp..

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