MotoGP rookie Cal Crutchlow once again demonstrated his skill at learning new tracks to finish seventh on the combined Friday practice timesheets for the Catalan Grand Prix.

The Monster Yamaha tech 3 rider still has plenty of room for improvement, particularly under braking, but was able top pick up some tips by following his hero Valentino Rossi.

"I really like the track. It seems to suit my riding style and it turned to be a positive first day for me," said the Englishman. "I used the same set of slick tyres all day and I ran the hard rear tyre, so I'm sure I could have gone quicker if I'd used the softer option. I did a few laps in the wet but it wasn't really wet conditions and it was a bit of a waste of time.

"Learning the braking markers is one of the biggest challenges and in the first corner, I was losing 0.4s on the brakes just at that point. I could make up time in other places but you can't afford to lose that much time in just one corner.

"I followed Valentino for a little bit and that was nice because you can learn stuff really quickly. He is smooth as silk and it is incredible to be learning off somebody who is my hero, but if I keep improving there is no reason why I can't have a good qualifying and be fighting for the top ten again in the race."

Team-mate Colin Edwards will take no further part in the weekend after breaking his collarbone in FP2 (see separate story).



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