16 Oct 2010

International Wire Story.

6:58 am on 16 October 2010



UPDATE 1-Motorcycling-Lorenzo fastest at soggy Australian GP

.. Rain delays practice session for two hours

.. Jorge Lorenzo quickest in first free practice

(updates after free practice)

MELBOURNE, Oct 15 (Reuters) - Heavy downpours that flooded part of the Phillip Island circuit and delayed practice sessions on Friday cleared for long enough to allow Jorge Lorenzo to set the quickest lap in the first free practice at the Australian Grand Prix.

The rain earlier delayed practice sessions for two hours as staff were deployed to clear puddles and sand from the track.

The newly-crowned Spanish world champion edged out local hope and title-holder Casey Stoner with a time of 1 minute 41.146 seconds.

American Nicky Hayden was third fastest while seven-times premier class champion Valentino Rossi was seventh as riders eased off in the slippery conditions.

Riders may face more of the same during qualifying on Saturday with further showers forecast. The race will be held on Sunday.

(Reporting by Ian Ransom; Editing by Ossian Shine; To query or comment on this story email sportsfeedback@thomsonreuters.com)