Stoner Tops First Practice at Sachsenring

Only days after finding out that he suffers from slight anaemia and started undergoing intense treatment to get back on race winning form, Ducati's Casey Stoner topped the first practice session of the German Grand Prix on Friday.

The time charts were heavily influenced by rain during the first half of hour, as torrential rain had hit the Sachsenring circuit prior to the 125cc practice session. Although the rain stopped before the start of the MotoGP practice, the riders still couldn't post some quick lap times throughout the first 30 minutes.

As the track started to get dry, laps times improved by the minute. It was only late in the 90-minute session that the riders started to put the hammer on, when Stoner stopped the clock at 1:22.779. Only minutes later, Honda's Dani Pedrosa – benefiting from HRC's newly-developed engine – posted a 0.255 seconds slower to secure 2nd place.

Yamaha's Valentino Rossi had to settle only with 3rd place, being more than 0.3 seconds off peace, while two other Hondas – customer bikes rode by Randy De Puniet and Alex de Angelis – went on to complete the Top 5.

As expected, especially on an unexpected track such as the one on Friday, the practice session couldn't have ended without a high-profiled crash. It was Suzuki's Chris Vermeulen to follow that rule, as his bike hit a damp patch when coming out of a corner and projected the Australian right in the middle of the track.

Although the crash was pretty heavy, the Suzuki rider managed to escape unharmed.

Here are the overall results of the first practice session on Friday.

1. Casey Stoner (Ducati)                         1:22.779
2. Dani Pedrosa (Honda)                         1:23.034
3. Valentino Rossi (Yamaha)                    1:23.088
4. Randy de Puniet (LCR Honda)            1:23.133
5. Alex de Angelis (Gresini Honda)          1:23.282
6. Colin Edwards (Tech 3 Yamaha)          1:23.295
7. Toni Elias Gresini (Honda)                    1:23.351
8. Nicky Hayden (Ducati)                          1:23.367
9. Andrea Dovizioso (Honda)                    1:23.370
10. Marco Melandri (Hayate Kawasaki)    1:23.466
11. Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha)                     1:23.496
12. Loris Capirossi (Suzuki)                      1:23.705
13. Mika Kallio (Pramac Ducati)                1:24.090
14. James Toseland (Tech 3 Yamaha)      1:24.317
15. Niccolo Canepa (Pramac Ducati)        1:24.908
16. Chris Vermeulen (Suzuki)                    1:25.161
17. Gabor Talmacsi (Scot Honda)             1:25.416
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