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MotoGP Silverstone: Stoner takes charge as Rossi struggles

Repsol Honda's Casey Stoner has taken charge of the MotoGP free practice timesheets at Silverstone this afternoon, going fastest in the second session as Valentino Rossi struggles in the dry conditions.

Rossi was fastest in this morning soaking wet opener but now finds himself some 2.3s behind the reigning world champion but team-mate Nicky Hayden is faring far better, grabbing fourth place and only half-a-second off Stoner's time in a session that was threatened by rain throughout.

Indeed, after ten minutes, the heavens did open with Spies in the lead but it dried out quickly, enabling the fastest men to get back grips with a dry surface.


The Australian set his 2'04.791 on the eighth lap of ten with Yamaha's Ben Spies recovering from his crash this morning to get within four one-hundredths on a 2'04.995. Alvaro Bautista, who lobbed it in the same place as the American, took third but is nearly two tenths slower than Stoner.

Stefan Bradl continued his run of form into this afternoon, going sixth quickest and six-tenths in arrears while Andrea Dovizioso slipped from third earlier in the 45-minute session to sixth but ahead of Jorge Lorenzo in seventh.

Britain's Cal Crutchlow placed eighth and ahead of Stoner's team-mate Dani Pedrosa while Hector Barbera rounded out the top ten. Rossi is the last of the prototypes and only seven-tenths faster than Randy De Puniet, top CRT man.

James Ellison, on the PBM Aprilia, was 17th while Colin Edwards had to contend with a faulty engine and is nearly seven seconds slower than Stoner.

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