Indy MotoGP | Stoner Tops First Practice

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2012 Red Bull Indianapolis MotoGP

The 2012 Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix got underway Friday with the first of two practices at the 2.62-mile Indianapolis Motor Speedway featuring 16 corners.

And leading the first free practice at Indy, which landed on the MotoGP schedule in 2008, was the man who was victorious at the track last season – Repsol Honda’s Casey Stoner.

The Australian, who will retire at the conclusion of the 2012 MotoGP Championship, was quickest at the damp track, posting a 1:41.925. The RC213 pilot who won the last round at Laguna Seca was 0.181 seconds quicker than his teammate Dani Pedrosa.

Two Americans followed – the home favorite Nicky Hayden, who was 0.547 of a second behind aboard the Ducati Team GP12, and Ben Spies, who was 0.611 of a second behind on the Yamaha Factory Racing YZR-M1. Spies was the final rider to post within a second of Stoner, the Texan followed by LCR Honda’s Stefan Bradl, who finished 1.102 behind.

As for the current MotoGP points leader, Yamaha Factory Racing’s Jorge Lorenzo, the Spaniard finished in an unusual eighth. The 2010 MotoGP Champ spent the final moments of FP1 in the garage, unhappy with the setup on his YZR-M1.

Following Bradl was the satellite San Carlo Honda Gresini rider Alvaro Baustista, who has been struggling with front-end grip. He was followed by Monster Yamaha Tech 3’s Cal Crutchlow in seventh, who suffered a crash during the 45-minute session. The satellite Yamaha rider was unhurt, and able to finish FP1 on his second bike.

Ducati Team’s Valentino Rossi, who will be rejoining Yamaha in 2013, finished ninth aboard the Ducati GP12. In tenth was Pramac Racing Ducati’s Hector Barbera, who was riding just 27 days after breaking his left tibia and fibula. But Barbera suffered a heavy highside in the session, causing it to be red flag for a short while. He was taken straight to the medical center where he was sighting chest and back pain, in particular in his vertebrae, which he had previously damaged very badly in a crash in Japan in 2008. He has been taken to Indianapolis Methodist Hospital for further checks.

CTR wildcards, Attack Performance’s Steve Rapp and GPTech’s Aaron Yates, finished 20th and 23rd respectively.

Photos by Ara Ashjian

 

2012 Indy MotoGP Free Practice 1 Results:

Pos.Num.RiderNationTeamBikeKm/hTimeGap 1st/Prev.
1.1Casey STONERAUSRepsol Honda TeamHonda325.71’41.925
2.26Dani PEDROSASPARepsol Honda TeamHonda326.81’42.1060.181 / 0.181
3.69Nicky HAYDENUSADucati TeamDucati326.91’42.4720.547 / 0.366
4.11Ben SPIESUSAYamaha Factory RacingYamaha325.91’42.5360.611 / 0.064
5.6Stefan BRADLGERLCR Honda MotoGPHonda322.91’43.0271.102 / 0.491
6.19Alvaro BAUTISTASPASan Carlo Honda GresiniHonda326.11’43.1951.270 / 0.168
7.35Cal CRUTCHLOWGBRMonster Yamaha Tech 3Yamaha322.21’43.2951.370 / 0.100
8.99Jorge LORENZOSPAYamaha Factory RacingYamaha326.01’43.3121.387 / 0.017
9.46Valentino ROSSIITADucati TeamDucati328.71’43.3451.420 / 0.033
10.8Hector BARBERASPAPramac Racing TeamDucati280.51’43.7361.811 / 0.391
11.4Andrea DOVIZIOSOITAMonster Yamaha Tech 3Yamaha324.81’43.7451.820 / 0.009
12.68Yonny HERNANDEZCOLAvintia BlusensBQR304.71’44.3282.403 / 0.583
13.41Aleix ESPARGAROSPAPower Electronics AsparART306.91’44.7142.789 / 0.386
14.17Karel ABRAHAMCZECardion AB MotoracingDucati324.11’44.7392.814 / 0.025
15.54Mattia PASINIITASpeed MasterART309.41’44.9132.988 / 0.174
16.14Randy DE PUNIETFRAPower Electronics AsparART311.61’46.2984.373 / 1.385
17.22Ivan SILVASPAAvintia BlusensBQR305.21’46.3324.407 / 0.034
18.51Michele PIRROITASan Carlo Honda GresiniFTR306.01’46.4804.555 / 0.148
19.5Colin EDWARDSUSANGM Mobile Forward RacingSuter306.61’46.5204.595 / 0.040
20.15Steve RAPPUSAAttack PerformanceAPR286.51’46.6194.694 / 0.099
21.9Danilo PETRUCCIITACame IodaRacing ProjectIoda287.51’46.9415.016 / 0.322
22.77James ELLISONGBRPaul Bird MotorsportART296.71’47.5065.581 / 0.565
23.20Aaron YATESUSAGPTechBCL1’48.0546.129 / 0.548