Fine day in rain Ducati's Rossi
LOOKING GOOD AGAIN: Valentino Rossi in action during wet practice ahead of the 2012 Jerez MotoGP and (inset) the maestro himself. images: AFP
JEREZ, Spain - Former MotoGP World champion Valentino Rossi enjoyed a rare successful day on his under-performing Ducati when he clocked the third-fastest time in rain-lashed practice for Sunday's Spanish GP.
Unheralded Spaniard Ivan Silva (Kawasaki) was quickest, more than two seconds ahead of Dani Pedrosa on a factory Honda.
Silva made the most of being able to run in a break in the rain on a drying track in the first of Friday's two sessions.
Rossi said: "We go pretty well in the wet. We're happy because it confirms that the bike has the same good feeling in the wet as last year's - that's important.
"I felt good immediately. We worked on the setting a bit but because we had already started with a good feeling I was able immediately to ride at the limit and do some good times. Now we have to wait to see what the weather does on Saturday in qualifying - and especially on Sunday."
Reigning World champion Casey Stoner of Australia was fifth-fastest on his Honda with Spain's Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha) who won the first race of the season in Qatar, fourth.
Combined times for the first two practice sessions at the Spanish Grand Prix on Friday:
1 Ivan Silva (ESP/Kawasaki-FTR) 1min48.674
2 Dani Pedrosa (Honda) +2.106,
3 Valentino Rossi (ITA/Ducati) +2.766
4 Jorge Lorenzo (ESP/Yamaha) +3.199
5 Casey Stoner (AUS/Honda) +3.432
6 Nicky Hayden (USA/Ducati) +3.580
7 Andrea Dovizioso (ITA/Yamaha) +4.396
8 Alvaro Bautista (ESP/Honda) +4.4492
9 Cal Crutchlow (GBR/Yamaha) +4.678
10 Ben Spies (USA/Yamaha) +4.735
11 Stefan Bradl (GER/Honda) +5.481
12 Randy de Puniet (FRA/Aprilia) +5.696
1 Johann Zarco (FRA/Motobi) 1min58.382
2 Mika Kallio (FIN/Kalex) +0.293
3 Ricard Cardus (ESP/AJR) +0.817
4 Anthony West (AUS/Moriwaki) +0.824
5 Andrea Iannone (ITA/Speed Up) +0.876
1 Romano Fenati (ITA/FTR Honda) 2min02.160
2 Maverick Vinales (ESP/FTR Honda) +0.248
3 Sandro Cortese (GER/KTM) +0.478
4 Miguel Oliveira (POR/Suter Honda) +0.857
5 Luis Salom (ESP/Kalex KTM) +0.965