The Fiat Yamaha team of Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi once again proved its dominance by taking the top two spots during Friday’s practice at Mugello. Rossi, who seemed to finally shake-off his remaining shoulder pain, came in with the fastest time of 1’49.751. Rossi’s teammate Lorenzo was closely behind and off the top pace by only 0.369 seconds.
Rizla Suzuki’s Loris Capirossi was able to start the weekend off well at his home GP in Italy by taking the third- fastest time in the free practice session after experimenting with different bike setups.
Monster Yamaha Tech 3 rider Colin Edwards put in a good opening performance at the Mugello circuit by taking fourth, which was just over a second off Rossi.
Only a thousandth of a second behind Edwards was Dani Pedrosa who took the fastest lap for Honda at 1’50.773 seconds. American Ben Spies followed up his poor performance at Le Mans by placing sixth on the timesheets at Mugello, only two-tenths off Pedrosa’s pace.
Marlboro Ducati’s Casey Stoner started the morning’s practice session badly when he had a run-off at Turn 15. In an effort to avoid hitting a fence the Australian had to set his Ducati down. Despite only completing 15 laps he was able to secure the seventh best time of free practice.
Honda’s Andrea Dovizioso and Ducati’s Nicky Hayden took eighth and ninth respectively, followed by Hector Barbera who rounded out the top-10.
Rizla Suzuki’s Alvaro Bautista was able to make his return after missing the last round in France while he recovered from his collarbone injury. Still sore, Bautista took 17th and was more than five seconds off Rossi’s pace.
MotoGP Mugello Friday Practice Results
1. Valentino Rossi (Yamaha) 1’49.751
2. Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha) 1’50.120
3. Loris Capirossi (Suzuki) 1’50.359
4. Colin Edwards (Yamaha) 1’50.772
5. Dani Pedrosa (Honda) 1’50.773
6. Ben Spies Monster (Yamaha) 1’51.004
7. Casey Stoner (Ducati) 1’51.128
8. Andrea Dovizioso(Honda) 1’51.255
9. Nicky Hayden (Ducati) 1’51.387
10. Hector Barbera (Ducati) 1’51.582
11. Randy de Puniet (Honda) 1’51.605
12. Marco Simoncelli (Honda) 1’51.717
13. Marco Melandri (Honda) 1’51.782
14. Aleix Espargaro (Ducati) 1’52.202
15. Hiroshi Aoyama (Honda) 1’52.399
16. Mika Kallio (Ducati) 1’52.418
17. Alvaro Bautista (Suzuki) 1’55.257
RSM Team Scot rider Alex De Angelis was in control of the Moto2 free practice session as the Italian GP got underway at Mugello. Setting the fastest pace of 1’56.422 during the 13th lap, De Angelis’ time was enough to top his nearest rival Sergio Gadea by two tenths of a second.
Tenerife 40 Pons rider Gadea was able to take second during practice with a time that came on the penultimate lap. Julian Simon trailed Gadea by 0.076 seconds for third on the final lap of the session, followed by Andrea Iannone of Fimmco Speed Up to make it four different chassis occupying the top-four positions.
Stefan Bradl, Jules Cluzel, Yuki Takahashi and Shoya Tomizawa were all in tightly grouped positions from fifth to eighth. Rounding out the top-10 and separated by just 0.918 seconds was Mike Di Meglio of Mapfre Aspar and Gabor Talmacsi of Fimmco Speed Up.
The current Championship leader Toni Elias took 11th for the day and was 1.032 off the pace set by De Angelis.
American rider Kenny Noyes struggled with his overall speed on Friday and was only able to manage 35th during practice after capturing pole position at Le Mans.
Moto2 Mugello Friday Practice Results
1. Alex De Angelis (Force GP210) 1’56.422
2. Sergio Gadea (Pons Kalex) 1’56.639
3. Julian Simon (Suter) 1’56.715
4. Andrea Iannone (Speed Up) 1’56.873
5. Stefan Bradl (Suter) 1’57.166
6. Jules Cluzel (Suter) 1’57.189
7. Yuki Takahashi (Tech 3) 1’57.264
8. Shoya Tomizawa (Suter) 1’57.276
9. Mike Di MEGLIO (Suter) 1’57.327
10. Gabor Talmacsi (Speed Up) 1’57.340
11. Toni Elias (Moriwaki) 274.4 1’57.454
12. Thomas Luthi (Moriwaki) 1’57.468
13. Mattia Pasini (Motobi) 1’57.502
14. Alex Baldolini (I.C.P.) 1’57.537
15. Yonny Hernandez (BQR-Moto) 1’57.680
Valentino Rossi (Fiat Yamaha):
“I am so happy to be back here in Mugello and we did a good first practice. We worked well, trying a lot of different settings as well as soft and hard Bridgestone tires, and we are quite fast. I still have pain in my shoulder but it seems that this track isn’t as bad and today I wasn’t suffering like I did in Le Mans. Of course we don’t know how the shoulder will feel over the weekend but at this early stage I’m quite confident. The important thing is to work at 100% to find the right setting and make sure we’re as fast as possible for Sunday.”
Jorge Lorenzo (Fiat Yamaha):
“I’m happy about this session and I’m feeling quite good. It’s always difficult to be fast straight away here, because you need many laps to understand the track with all its changes in direction, but after I had done some laps I improved a lot. Now we have to try to improve some things on the bike. The most important thing is to get on the front row tomorrow and to do that we need to make some small changes. The weather is hot but it’s okay, I’m fit, well prepared and have a good pace already.”
Loris Capirossi (Rizla Suzuki):
“Apart from the crash it has been a very positive day here in Mugello! We started with two different bikes and one was very good and gave me a good feeling. Overall I am very happy with the day’s work. I made the mistake and crashed at the end, it was my fault and I know what caused it so it is no big problem. I know we can still improve this weekend and I am confident for the race.”
Alvaro Bautista (Rizla Suzuki):
“I had a very hard practice because I thought I was in better condition than I am. I feel better than I did at Le Mans, but it is still very hard to change direction and I don’t have enough strength in my left arm to ride the bike how I would like to. I am using all my body and this is making me go slower than I want. My target this weekend is to get more confident with the bike and to get a good feeling. I am determined to finish on Sunday, so that is my first goal.”