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Pedrosa edges Honda team-mate Stoner to go fastest in final MotoGP practice at Estoril

Dani PedrosaDani Pedrosa edged Honda works team-mate Casey Stoner by just 12 hundredths of a second in the final MotoGP practice session at Estoril.

The fight for top spot came down to the two Honda riders, with the lead changing hands several times over the session before Pedrosa eventually sealed the issue with a 1m37.325s.

For a long while no-one else was able to join Honda in dipping under the 1m38s mark, but with 12 minutes to run Jorge Lorenzo got in on the act to go third fastest, just over three tenths down on Pedrosa.

Tech 3 Yamaha duo Cal Crutchlow and Andrea Dovizioso were next up in fourth and fifth. Dovizioso had led the inter-team battle in the early stages, but was demoted to fifth by Crutchlow with 18 minutes to run.

Late improvements sent Ducati's Valentino Rossi and then Gresini Honda's Alvaro Bautista into sixth.

Rossi had elected to run the harder compound tyre for much of the session - in contrast to the majority of the field - and ran around 10th as a consequence.

He jumped up to sixth in the final minute however, although Bautista, who was still on circuit, managed to then push the Italian down to seventh.

The second works Yamahas and Ducatis of Ben Spies and Nicky Hayden beat LCR Honda's Stefan Bradl to eighth and ninth.

Randy de Puniet once again finished top of the CRT pile. For a long time he was faster than the satellite bikes of Hector Barbera and Karel Abraham, although Barbera was able to find late improvements to move ahead of the Frenchman and into 11th.

Pos  Rider             Team/Bike                 Time       Gap
 1.  Dani Pedrosa      Honda                     1m37.326s
 2.  Casey Stoner      Honda                     1m37.338s  + 0.012s
 3.  Jorge Lorenzo     Yamaha                    1m37.680s  + 0.354s
 4.  Cal Crutchlow     Tech 3 Yamaha             1m38.086s  + 0.760s
 5.  Andrea Dovizioso  Tech 3 Yamaha             1m38.273s  + 0.947s
 6.  Alvaro Bautista   Gresini Honda             1m38.332s  + 1.006s
 7.  Valentino Rossi   Ducati                    1m38.443s  + 1.117s
 8.  Ben Spies         Yamaha                    1m38.558s  + 1.232s
 9.  Nicky Hayden      Ducati                    1m38.602s  + 1.276s
10.  Stefan Bradl      LCR Honda                 1m38.714s  + 1.388s
11.  Hector Barbera    Pramac Ducati             1m38.856s  + 1.530s
12.  Randy de Puniet   Aspar Aprilia             1m39.361s  + 2.035s
13.  Aleix Espargaro   Aspar Aprilia             1m40.225s  + 2.899s
14.  Karel Abraham     Cardion Ducati            1m40.374s  + 3.048s
15.  Yonny Hernandez   Avintia FTR-Kawasaki      1m40.561s  + 3.235s
16.  Mattia Pasini     Speed Master Aprilia      1m40.875s  + 3.549s
17.  Michele Pirro     Gresini FTR-Honda         1m41.379s  + 4.053s
18.  Ivan Silva        Avintia Inmotec-Kawasaki  1m41.772s  + 4.446s
19.  Danilo Petrucci   Ioda-Aprilia              1m42.002s  + 4.676s
20.  James Ellison     Paul Bird Aprilia         1m42.103s  + 4.777s
21.  Colin Edwards     Forward Suter-BMW         1m42.145s  + 4.819s
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