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Casey Stoner tops first Indianapolis practice ahead of Honda team-mate Pedrosa

Casey Stoner HondaCasey Stoner edged out works Honda team-mate Dani Pedrosa to go fastest in MotoGP's opening practice session at Indianapolis.

The Australian set his fastest time in the final minutes, and after a brief red flag period caused when Hector Barbera fell heavily at T16.

The Spaniard was riding for Pramac Ducati in a bid to prove his fitness, having broken his leg just four weeks ago. He had to be stretchered off the circuit and was taken to the medical centre and then the local hospital with chest and back pain. Pramac have 2010 Moto2 champion Toni Elias on standby.

Honda had controlled the session up until Barbera's incident, with Pedrosa clear on a 1m42.192s.

Stoner then managed to shave around two tenths off that after the resumption, dipping into the 1m41s.

No other rider was able to get within five tenths of a second of the Australian, with Ducati's Nicky Hayden leading the rest of the pack, 0.547s down.

His compatriot Ben Spies, facing possibly his final home MotoGP race - his future remains undecided - was fourth, a further tenth of a second down the road.

Stefan Bradl (LCR Honda) and Alvaro Bautista (Gresini) put the gloss on a strong session for Honda by finishing fifth and sixth respectively, ahead of Yamaha riders Cal Crutchlow (Tech 3) and championship leader Jorge Lorenzo.

Crutchlow was the only other man to fall during the session, losing his bike early on at T14. He recovered and was able to return in the final minutes, securing seventh.

That left him four spots above team-mate Andrea Dovizioso, with Lorenzo, Valentino Rossi and Barbera separating the pair.

Pos  Rider               Bike            Time                Laps
 1.  Casey Stoner        Honda           1m41.925s             14
 2.  Dani Pedrosa        Honda           1m42.106s  + 0.181s   17
 3.  Nicky Hayden        Ducati          1m42.472s  + 0.547s   19
 4.  Ben Spies           Yamaha          1m42.536s  + 0.611s   17
 5.  Stefan Bradl        LCR Honda       1m43.027s  + 1.102s   20
 6.  Alvaro Bautista     Gresini Honda   1m43.195s  + 1.270s   19
 7.  Cal Crutchlow       Tech 3 Yamaha   1m43.295s  + 1.370s   17
 8.  Jorge Lorenzo       Yamaha          1m43.312s  + 1.387s   15
 9.  Valentino Rossi     Ducati          1m43.345s  + 1.420s   19
10.  Hector Barbera      Pramac Ducati   1m43.736s  + 1.811s   12
11.  Andrea Dovizioso    Tech 3 Yamaha   1m43.745s  + 1.820s   19
12.  Yonny Hernandez     BQR             1m44.328s  + 2.403s   19
13.  Aleix Espargaro     ART             1m44.714s  + 2.789s   18
14.  Karel Abraham       Cardion Ducati  1m44.739s  + 2.814s   16
15.  Mattia Pasini       ART             1m44.913s  + 2.988s   18
16.  Randy De Puniet     ART             1m46.298s  + 4.373s   19
17.  Ivan Silva          BQR             1m46.332s  + 4.407s   22
18.  Michele Pirro       FTR             1m46.480s  + 4.555s   17
19.  Colin Edwards       Suter           1m46.520s  + 4.595s   18
20.  Steve Rapp          APR             1m46.619s  + 4.694s   13
21.  Danilo Petrucci     Ioda            1m46.941s  + 5.016s   22
22.  James Ellison       ART             1m47.506s  + 5.581s   21
23.  Aaron Yates         BCL             1m48.054s  + 6.129s   15

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