Former MotoGP World Championship leader Dani Pedrosa was just 16th fastest during a painful return to action in the Czech Republic on Friday.

The Repsol Honda rider is still struggling with the broken left wrist and index finger he suffered when he fell out of the lead of the wet German Grand Prix on July 13.

That accident also forced his withdraw from the following US GP but, like all the Michelin riders, Pedrosa is also having tyre problems on the resurfaced Brno circuit.

"Both of today's sessions were quite difficult for us. My left wrist and index finger are still hurting when I ride the bike, and the tyres are not helping the situation," confirmed the Spaniard, who has now slipped to third in the championship, 41 points behind leader Valentino Rossi.

"The asphalt is new, but it's the same situation for everyone. We have tried several different solutions today and so far we still haven't found the right tyres for the race," he added. "We will keep working tomorrow, looking for the best tyres and working on the machine. We hope we can get some more dry track time and then we will see for Sunday."

"Dani is still feeling pain from his left hand injury. But he can ride and we believe that the situation will get better," stated team manager Kazuhiko Yamano. "We are having some difficulties with tyre choice, Dani is lacking contact feeling here, especially from the front tyre. His crew have made some small adjustments today, mainly to the suspension. We hope he will be in better shape tomorrow."

Pedrosa's team-mate Nicky Hayden is not present this weekend, having injured his heel on a Supermoto bike. Hayden will also miss the post-Brno test session, when Pedrosa is expected to try the pneumatic-valve Honda engine.


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