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Hayden tops rain-lashed Australia practice
Repsol Honda RC212V rider Nicky Hayden dominated this afternoon’s soaking-wet second practice session at Phillip Island, lapping the high-speed seaside track three quarters of a second faster than his closest rival.

The American has been using his Michelin rain tires to stunning effect recently, topping last weekend’s rain-hit opening session at Motegi and finishing second in the hurricane-hit Indianapolis GP two weeks earlier. The 2008 MotoGP season is proving to be the wettest in memory, with rain falling at the vast majority of events so far.

In this morning’s opening session, run in dry conditions, Hayden was 11th quickest, working hard to find more traction around this high-speed track.

Nicky Hayden. FP1 (dry): 11th fastest, 1m 31.284s. FP2 (wet): fastest, 1m 38.820s
“This morning it wasn’t great to be in eleventh, but this afternoon it was nice to be fastest in the wet and consistently really quick at the end, things were feeling really good. My best rain lap time was only seven seconds slower than my best this morning, and it was real wet, so that’s down to some good Michelin rain tires. But honestly I could have done with some more dry track time to sort out some problems we had this morning. I was struggling with traction, and without traction here you’re not going anywhere. We have got some things to try with the bike set-up, which we couldn’t try so much in the wet, but hopefully we can use tomorrow. I need to be going faster in the dry, we’ve definitely got some work to do, so we’ll keep pushing and see what the weather does tomorrow. I love this track, I love racing at speed, it’s a great thrill, I just need to find some edge grip. If we can find that I can be fast in the dry too.”

1 Nicky HAYDEN USA Repsol Honda Team Honda 1'38.820
2 Andrea DOVIZIOSO ITA JiR Team Scot MotoGP Honda 1'39.575 
3 Chris VERMEULEN AUS Rizla Suzuki MotoGP Suzuki 1'39.824 
4 Casey STONER AUS Ducati Marlboro Team Ducati 1'40.585 
5 Jorge LORENZO SPA Fiat Yamaha Team Yamaha 1'40.804 
6 Valentino ROSSI ITA Fiat Yamaha Team Yamaha 1'40.892 
7 Sylvain GUINTOLI FRA Alice Team Ducati 1'40.948 
8 Dani PEDROSA SPA Repsol Honda Team Honda 1'41.638 
9 Toni ELIAS SPA Alice Team Ducati 1'41.788 299.668
10 Colin EDWARDS USA Tech 3 Yamaha Yamaha 1'41.834 
11 Alex DE ANGELIS RSM San Carlo Honda Gresini Honda 1'42.408 
12 Anthony WEST AUS Kawasaki Racing Team Kawasaki 1'42.905 
13 Randy DE PUNIET FRA LCR Honda MotoGP Honda 1'43.006 
14 John HOPKINS USA Kawasaki Racing Team Kawasaki 1'43.221 
15 Shinya NAKANO JPN San Carlo Honda Gresini Honda 1'43.248 
16 Loris CAPIROSSI ITA Rizla Suzuki MotoGP Suzuki 1'43.937 
17 James TOSELAND GBR Tech 3 Yamaha Yamaha 1'44.084 
18 Marco MELANDRI ITA Ducati Marlboro Team Ducati 1'44.509 

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