Dani Pedrosa took over at the top during Friday afternoon practice for the Indianapolis MotoGP.

Riding on a much improved surface relative to this morning, lap times tumbled as a result, with Pedrosa already two-seconds under team-mate Casey Stoner's pace setting FP1 time by the midway point of the afternoon.

A further late gain saw second-in-the-championship Pedrosa conclude the session with a best time of 1m 39.783s, just under last year's race lap record. And it wasn't Stoner in second.

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The Australian slid, literally, back to fifth (+0.840s) this afternoon, with Yamaha riders Ben Spies, Jorge Lorenzo and Andrea Dovizioso separating the Repsol riders.

Home star Spies, on the Indy rostrum for the past two seasons, lapped 0.295s from Pedrosa, with title leader Lorenzo 0.719s from the top.

Tech 3 rider Dovizioso then nipped 0.058s ahead of Stoner on his final lap of the day.

Lorenzo holds a 23 point lead over Pedrosa and 32 point advantage over Stoner heading into round eleven of 18.

Dovizioso's team-mate Cal Crutchlow, who fell this morning, was sixth and 1.2s from Pedrosa, with Gresini Honda's Alvaro Bautista dropping one place to seventh in FP2. Honda LCR rookie Stefan Bradl was relegated from fifth to eighth this afternoon.

Ducati's home star Nicky Hayden had been an impressive third this morning, but the increased grip levels worked against the Kentuckian, who remained the top Ducati but in ninth place (+1.6s).

Team-mate Valentino Rossi was a fraction slower in tenth, with Aspar's Randy de Puniet just three tenths behind Rossi and the leading CRT rider (+2.072s).

Karel Abraham took twelfth for Cardion AB, while fellow satellite rider Hector Barbera was ruled unfit to take part in the remainder of the weekend after sustaining fractures to the 5th, 6th and 8th dorsal vertebrae in a Friday morning highside.

The Pramac Ducati rider, who was attempting a return to action less than a month after breaking his left tibia and fibula, has again been replaced by Toni Elias who rode for Pramac at the previous Laguna Seca round.

Elias was 17th quickest (+3.312s) this afternoon.

Texan Colin Edwards was 18th for Forward Racing, which is continuing with the Suter-BMW this weekend.

Two home wild-card CRT entries are present at Indy: Steve Rapp (Attack Performance), who took part in the previous Laguna Seca round but failed to qualify, plus fellow AMA veteran Aaron Yates, who is making his MotoGP debut for GPTech.

Rapp did not ride this afternoon due to 'bike damage', while 38-year-old Yates remained last, with the gap to the front growing slightly to 6.238s.

Friday practice (2):

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