Valencia MotoGP: Nicky Hayden quickest in wet first practice

Nicky Hayden set the pace in a wet opening practice session for MotoGP's 2012 finale at Valencia

Valencia MotoGP: Nicky Hayden quickest in wet first practice

A late rally allowed him to work his way down to a 1m44.485s, over one second clear of the field, although the soaked surface was far from conducive to chasing outright times.

Dani Pedrosa had been fastest with two minutes to run, but was in the pits and therefore unable to respond as Hayden made his charge.

The Honda rider, twice a winner at the Spanish track, had to settle for second, 1.005s down.

Newly crowned double-champion Jorge Lorenzo was four tenths down the road in third, ahead of Tech 3's Andrea Dovizioso.

Valencia will mark the Italian's final race with the satellite Yamaha squad before he moves across to Ducati.

Stablemate Cal Crutchlow had held the intra-team advantage when he moved into third with nine minutes to run, but with a flurry of late improvements found himself pushed down to eighth at the flag.

Separating him and Dovizioso were Gresini's Alvaro Bautista, CRT points leader Aleix Espargaro and the second Ducati of Valentino Rossi.

Rossi, like Dovizioso facing his last race for his current team, was just over two seconds down on Hayden.

The second CRT Aspar of Randy de Puniet beat Phillip Island race winner Casey Stoner to ninth.

Despite the conditions there were only two fallers - James Ellison and Katsuyuki Nakasuga, who is replacing the injured Ben Spies this weekend. Both were unhurt.

Pos  Rider               Team/Bike                 Time       Gap
 1.  Nicky Hayden        Ducati                    1m44.485s
 2.  Dani Pedrosa        Honda                     1m45.490s  + 1.005s
 3.  Jorge Lorenzo       Yamaha                    1m45.945s  + 1.460s
 4.  Andrea Dovizioso    Tech 3 Yamaha             1m46.021s  + 1.536s
 5.  Alvaro Bautista     Gresini Honda             1m46.413s  + 1.928s
 6.  Aleix Espargaro     Aspar Aprilia             1m46.574s  + 2.089s
 7.  Valentino Rossi     Ducati                    1m46.678s  + 2.193s
 8.  Cal Crutchlow       Tech 3 Yamaha             1m46.839s  + 2.354s
 9.  Randy De Puniet     Aspar Aprilia             1m47.039s  + 2.554s
10.  Casey Stoner        Honda                     1m47.527s  + 3.042s
11.  Stefan Bradl        LCR Honda                 1m47.825s  + 3.340s
12.  Karel Abraham       Cardion Ducati            1m47.862s  + 3.377s
13.  Katsuyuki Nakasuga  Yamaha                    1m48.110s  + 3.625s
14.  Michele Pirro       Gresini FTR-Honda         1m48.244s  + 3.759s
15.  Ivan Silva          Avintia FTR-Kawasaki      1m48.918s  + 4.433s
16.  Danilo Petrucci     Ioda Suter-BMW            1m49.143s  + 4.658s
17.  Hector Barbera      Aspar Ducati              1m49.444s  + 4.959s
18.  Colin Edwards       Forward Suter-BMW         1m49.748s  + 5.263s
19.  James Ellison       Paul Bird Aprilia         1m50.735s  + 6.250s
20.  Roberto Rolfo       Speed Master Aprilia      1m51.826s  + 7.341s
21.  Claudio Corti       Avintia Inmotec-Kawasaki  1m51.996s  + 7.511s
22.  Hiroshi Aoyama      Avintia FTR-Kawasaki      1m54.245s  + 9.760s

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