Ben Spies began his quest for a home victory in perfect style with the fastest time in first practice for the Indianapolis Grand Prix. The MotoGP weekend began in unusual fashion with a dirty track surface leading to some strange results, with a number of big names struggling early on.
Spies had no obvious difficulties though and set a 1:43.260 with just over a minute to go, edging out championship leader Casey Stoner who had taken the fastest time moments earlier. The Australian was among the leading runners that pitted just a lap into their first run, clearly feeling unhappy with the set-up of his Honda machine.
The Australian ended up just under three tenths off the pace in second with Colin Edwards producing one of the surprises of the morning to take third, a fraction of a second behind the series leader.
Marco Simoncelli topped the timesheets for much of the session as the track rubbered in. Fresh from his maiden podium two weeks ago, the Italian looked to be on top form again and virtually matched the time of Stoner and Edwards in fourth.
The two works Ducatis were next up with Nicky Hayden sneaking in front of Valentino Rossi on his final lap of the session. Although they were around a second off the ultimate pace, the Italian squad will have been pleased to have two works Hondas and a factory Yamaha behind them in the first timed session.
Hector Barbera was eighth fastest and had the rare distinction of being the top Spaniard in FP1 with Jorge Lorenzo and Dani Pedrosa languishing in ninth and tenth respectively. The two men who dominated qualifying for the previous race at Brno were visibly unhappy with their respective bikes and will be hoping for much more later this afternoon.
Cal Crutchlow took a while to get going as he explored the limits of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The Briton took a couple of trips through the grass on his way to 12th while Karel Abraham also had a disrupted session as his Ducati broke down on two occasions.
Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix: Free Practice 1 Result
|1||Ben Spies||USA||Yamaha||Yamaha Factory Racing||1:43.260|
|2||Casey Stoner||AUS||Honda||Repsol Honda Team||+0.292|
|3||Colin Edwards||USA||Yamaha||Monster Yamaha Tech 3||+0.314|
|4||Marco Simoncelli||ITA||Honda||San Carlo Honda Gresini||+0.322|
|5||Nicky Hayden||USA||Ducati||Ducati Team||+0.976|
|6||Valentino Rossi||ITA||Ducati||Ducati Team||+1.102|
|7||Andrea Dovizioso||ITA||Honda||Repsol Honda Team||+1.291|
|8||Hector Barbera||SPA||Ducati||Mapfre Aspar Team MotoGP||+1.766|
|9||Jorge Lorenzo||SPA||Yamaha||Yamaha Factory Racing||+1.805|
|10||Dani Pedrosa||SPA||Honda||Repsol Honda Team||+1.932|
|11||Alvaro Bautista||SPA||Suzuki||Rizla Suzuki MotoGP||+1.989|
|12||Cal Crutchlow||GBR||Yamaha||Monster Yamaha Tech 3||+2.108|
|13||Randy de Puniet||FRA||Ducati||Pramac Racing Team||+2.317|
|14||Hiroshi Aoyama||JAP||Honda||San Carlo Honda Gresini||+2.899|
|15||Loris Capirossi||ITA||Ducati||Pramac Racing Team||+3.224|
|16||Karel Abraham||CZE||Ducati||Cardion AB Motoracing||+3.383|
|17||Toni Elias||SPA||Honda||LCR Honda MotoGP||+4.247|