Fabrizio Leads Early

Cycle News Staff | May 8, 2009

Ducati Xerox’s Michel Fabrizio led today’s opening practice session for Sunday’s two World Superbike races at the Monza circuit in Itay, the Italian topping Texan Ben Spies by .246 of a second.Those two went back and forth throughout the session, but ultimately it was Fabrizio getting the nod at the end of the hour, taking the top spot with some 10 minutes to go.It was a good day for the Yamaha Motor Italia team with Spies teammate Tom Sykes finishing right behind Spies in third spot. The Brit’s best was a 1:46.458 and that put him ahead of Alstare Suzuki’s Max Neukirchner, a winner at Monza last year.Fifth went to Neukirchner’s teammate Yukio Kagayama, the Japanese rider just fractions ahead of countryman and World Championship points leader Noriyuki Haga. Haga and his Ducati were sixth on the day.Then came Ten Kate Honda’s Ryuichi Kiyonari ahead of Hannspree Ten Kate Honda’s Carlos Checa with Regis Laconi and Shane Byrne rounding out the top 10 on their Ducatis.Stiggy Honda’s Leon Haslam was 12th with his fill-in teammate Jake Zemke ending his first World Superbike session with the team in 23rd. It was also Zemke’s first laps at the Monza circuit.The top 10 are covered by less than a second.

Friday Practice

1.                  Michel Fabrizio (Ducati) 1:46.177

2.                  Ben Spies (Yamaha) 1:46.423

3.                  Tom Sykes (Yamaha) 1:46.458

4.                  Max Neukirchner (Suzuki) 1:46.520

5.                  Yukio Kagayama (Suzuki) 1:46.520

6. Noriyuki Haga (Ducati) 1:46.605

7.                  Ryuichi Kiyonari (Honda) 1:46.615

8.                  Carlos Checa (Honda) 1:46.960

9.                  Regis Laconi (Ducati) 1:47.068

10.                  Shane Byrne (Ducati) 1:47.10423. Jake Zemke (Honda) 1:49.405