Stoner fastest again as Qatar test ends

Casey Stoner ended the Qatar test at the top of the timesheets, having dominated the final night at the Losail track

Stoner fastest again as Qatar test ends

The Ducati rider, who had also been quickest at Sepang last month, was 0.989 seconds clear of second-placed Jorge Lorenzo, whose Yamaha teammate Valentino Rossi completed the top three.

Once again Stoner limited his mileage, focusing on short runs and only completing 31 laps as he continues to recover from his winter wrist surgery. He had a minor fall at Turn 2, but escaped without injury or significant bike damage.

Lorenzo's second place was an encouraging result after the Spaniard had previously struggled to get to grips with the now mandatory Bridgestone tyres. He was 0.239 seconds quicker than Rossi.

Chris Vermeulen and Loris Capirossi continued Suzuki's strong winter form in fourth and sixth places, despite a crash for Capirossi during the evening.

They were split by Nicky Hayden, who took a promising fifth place - albeit 1.5 seconds adrift of his Ducati teammate Stoner.

Pramac Ducati's Niccolo Canepa and Scot Honda's Yuki Takahashi were the other riders to fall during tonight's session, but both rookies were unharmed.

Only 16 riders took part in the final day, with Honda's Dani Pedrosa having flown back to Barcelona for further medical checks after aggravating knee and wrist injuries in a crash yesterday. Sete Gibernau (Onde Ducati) sat out the entire test due to a shoulder problem.

There is now a three-and-a-half week break before the final pre-season test at Jerez on 28-29 March, with the MotoGP season commencing back in Qatar on 12 April.

Pos Rider Bike Time Laps 1. Casey Stoner Ducati 1:55.744 31 2. Jorge Lorenzo Yamaha 1:56.733 82 3. Valentino Rossi Yamaha 1:56.972 75 4. Chris Vermeulen Suzuki 1:57.224 70 5. Nicky Hayden Ducati 1:57.225 53 6. Loris Capirossi Suzuki 1:57.253 42 7. Randy De Puniet Honda 1:57.401 77 8. Andrea Dovizioso Honda 1:57.449 74 9. Colin Edwards Yamaha 1:57.515 46 10. Alex De Angelis Honda 1:57.591 61 11. Toni Elias Honda 1:57.804 66 12. Mika Kallio Ducati 1:57.938 54 13. Niccolo Canepa Ducati 1:57.946 50 14. Yuki Takahashi Honda 1:58.412 61 15. James Toseland Yamaha 1:58.786 51 16. Marco Melandri Kawasaki 1:58.851 73 

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