2011 Sachsenring MotoGP FP2 Result: Simoncelli Edges Lorenzo In Final Moments

Marco Simoncelli has taken control of the first day of practice at the Sachsenring, following up his fastest time in the morning session with the fastest time in this afternoon's FP2 session for the MotoGP class. The San Carlo Gresini Honda rider had been fast all throughout practice, sharing the top spot with Yamaha's Jorge Lorenzo, but Lorenzo looked like coming out on top right up until the very last moments. With his final flying lap, Simoncelli dislodged Lorenzo from the top of the standings, demoting the Spaniard to 2nd.

Dani Pedrosa set the 3rd fastest time, impressive given that the Repsol Honda rider is still recovering from surgery after his crash at Le Mans, and even more impressive given that Pedrosa also crashed during the morning session, tumbling through the gravel at the very fast right hander of Turn 11. Pedrosa's teammate Casey Stoner ended up in 4th, slowly finding his feet after a tentative start after a crash during the morning session. The championship leader had suffered a huge highside in FP1, getting tossed over the front of his Repsol Honda, and had been taken for examination to the Clinica Mobile. Fortunately, the X-rays showed he had not broken anything, and could continue to take part in the weekend. 

Andrea Dovizioso rounded out the trio of Repsol Hondas in 5th, finishing ahead of the first Ducati, the factory Marlboro machine of Nicky Hayden. Ben Spies ended the session behind Hayden in 7th, and in front of the Pramac Ducati of Randy de Puniet and the Rizla Suzuki of Alvaro Bautista. Karel Abraham rounded out the top 10, just over a second behind Simoncelli.

Sylvain Guintoli stepped in for Loris Capirossi at Pramac Ducati, after the Italian veteran decided he was not recovered enough to continue to take part. Guintoli's lack of time on the bike - with only one day of testing aboard the machine at Mugello after the race - saw the Frenchman end the session over 3.7 seconds behind Simoncelli.


Pos No. Rider Bike Time Diff Diff Previous
1 58 Marco SIMONCELLI HONDA 1'22.225    
2 1 Jorge LORENZO YAMAHA 1'22.320 0.095 0.095
3 26 Dani PEDROSA HONDA 1'22.432 0.207 0.112
4 27 Casey STONER HONDA 1'22.542 0.317 0.110
5 4 Andrea DOVIZIOSO HONDA 1'22.654 0.429 0.112
6 69 Nicky HAYDEN DUCATI 1'22.882 0.657 0.228
7 11 Ben SPIES YAMAHA 1'22.894 0.669 0.012
8 14 Randy DE PUNIET DUCATI 1'23.037 0.812 0.143
9 19 Alvaro BAUTISTA SUZUKI 1'23.261 1.036 0.224
10 17 Karel ABRAHAM DUCATI 1'23.352 1.127 0.091
11 5 Colin EDWARDS YAMAHA 1'23.431 1.206 0.079
12 46 Valentino ROSSI DUCATI 1'23.533 1.308 0.102
13 8 Hector BARBERA DUCATI 1'23.625 1.400 0.092
14 35 Cal CRUTCHLOW YAMAHA 1'23.760 1.535 0.135
15 7 Hiroshi AOYAMA HONDA 1'23.906 1.681 0.146
16 24 Toni ELIAS HONDA 1'24.304 2.079 0.398
17 50 Sylvain GUINTOLI DUCATI 1'25.964 3.739 1.660


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I suspect Spies to edge up a few places as the weekend moves on. I've read that he's getting over a cold and knew they had some things to work on. Lucky for Stoner he wasn't hurt in his crash but that shows that this title race is only one highside away from being turned on it's head. Weird seeing Rossi consistently behind guys like RDP and Abraham on the times sheets but to make a long story short I don't feel bad for him in the least.

I wouldn't even say it is one highside from being over. It looks like Yamaha/Lorenzo have found something. I really didn't expect them to be this fast here. The Yamaha has now looked as good or better than Honda at Assen, Mugello, and Sachsenring...which are all three different types of circuits. If Lorenzo start winning again and you have Pedrosa and Simoncelli occasionally taking points away from Stoner, Lorenzo could be back in front very soon.

I'm not saying over but just realizing that crash could shake things up. The Yamaha has seemed better especially for Lorenzo of late. I guess them putting on some of the 2010 bits did make it feel like "his" old bike again like he said. Also it seems as though Rossi has some sort of arm injury if I'm not mistaken. We about need a week to week injury report to keep track of who has what wrong with them.

I have no idea why I typed "over" that wasn't what I was thinking. I meant to say that even if Stoner stays healthy I think Lorenzo is going to give him a battle for the championship. But I agree with so many people getting injured that it seems like who wins it all this year will be the one that doesn't get injured.