Dominant Stoner Takes BMW As Rain Stops Play At Jerez

Casey Stoner did at Jerez what Casey Stoner seems to be capable of at any circuit. The Australian dominated the 45 minute special qualifying session at the official IRTA Test at Jerez, eventually taking the BMW on offer for the fastest lap by over 7/10ths of a second. The Ducati rider took control of the session just 8 minutes in, smashing the 1'40 barrier with a lap of 1'39.176, over a second up on the rest of the field.

The rest of the session saw the other riders edging closer, with Valentino Rossi looking like taking top spot from Stoner, until he was balked by a slower rider. But with just under 10 minutes of the session left, Stoner stomped on any hopes other riders might have been cherishing of bagging the BMW. The Australian slashed half a second off his previous time, putting in a lap of 1'38.646 to claim the special BMW M Award.

A few minutes later, the black clouds which had been threatening the track finally broke over the circuit, drenching the track and halting any chance of riders improving their times. The entire field headed back to the safety of the pits, and with 5 minutes of the official session left, it was effectively over.

Bad luck dogged James Toseland at Jerez. With 16 min to go, the Englishman hit a white line going into to Turn 3, and tumbled through the gravel at high speed. The accident caused the session to be briefly red flagged, as the medics transported Toseland and the remains of his Tech 3 Yamaha from the track. The rider was reported to be OK, but he looked badly banged up. The word so far is that Toseland suffered a concussion, but no official announcements have been made.

Nicky Hayden was slightly luckier than Toseland. The American ran wide into the gravel, but used all his dirt track skills to stay upright as he ran through the gravel at high speed.

Results of the BMW M Award.

Pos No. Rider Bike Time Diff
1 27 Casey Stoner Ducati 1'38.646 0.000
2 46 Valentino Rossi Yamaha 1'39.365 0.719
3 65 Loris Capirossi Suzuki 1'39.757 1.111
4 99 Jorge Lorenzo Yamaha 1'39.829 1.183
5 7 Chris Vermeulen Suzuki 1'39.848 1.202
6 36 Mika Kallio Ducati 1'40.149 1.503
7 4 Andrea Dovizioso Honda 1'40.168 1.522
8 59 Sete Gibernau Ducati 1'40.228 1.582
9 24 Toni Elias Honda 1'40.266 1.620
10 5 Colin Edwards Yamaha 1'40.305 1.659
11 69 Nicky Hayden Ducati 1'40.401 1.755
12 33 Marco Melandri Kawasaki 1'40.405 1.759
13 14 Randy de Puniet Honda 1'40.646 2.000
14 72 Yuki Takahashi Honda 1'40.814 2.168
15 15 Alex de Angelis Honda 1'40.869 2.223
16 52 James Toseland Yamaha 1'41.425 2.779
17 22 Vito Guareschi Ducati 1'41.485 2.839
18 88 Niccolo Canepa Ducati 1'41.551 2.905
19 64 Kosuoke Akiyoshi Honda 1'42.206 3.560


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