Laconi takes theearly advantage

The Frenchman Regis Laconi, who rode to his first career 500cc victory in the Valencia Grand Prix last year, was quickest in provisional qualifying yesterday for this year's edition.

The Frenchman Regis Laconi, who rode to his first career 500cc victory in the Valencia Grand Prix last year, was quickest in provisional qualifying yesterday for this year's edition.

Riding on the Ricardo Tormo circuit, Laconi clocked 1min 35.682se, just .003sec ahead of the American rider Kenny Roberts, who recorded 1:35.685. Roberts, who rides a Suzuki, leads the world standings with 194 points.

The Brazilian Alex Barros was third in 1:35.824, but the world champion, Alex Criville of Spain, finished in 10th in 1:36.546 after he fell in the last few minutes of qualifying.

With four races to go Roberts leads the standings by 46 points from Italian Valentino Rossi, who finished down in ninth.

Japan's Shinya Nakano led the 250cc class with a time of 1:37.263, with Olivier Jacque of France, who won the Portuguese GP two weeks ago, coming in second with 1:37.524, followed closely by Italians Branco Battiani in 1:37.552 and Marco Melandri, 1:37.718. Jacque heads the 250cc championship standings with 221 points, a comfortable 27-point lead over Nakano.

In the 125cc championship, Japan's Youichi Ui topped the charts by clocking 1:41.055. The poles for tomorrow's race will be decided in today's final qualifying sessions.

VALENCIA GRAND PRIX Leading first practice times: 500cc: 1 R Laconi (Fr) Yamaha 1min 35.682sec; 2 K Roberts (US) Suzuki 1:35.685; 3 A Barros (Br) Honda 1:35.824; 4 L Capirossi (It) Honda 1:35.860; 5 M Biaggi (It) Yamaha 1:36.075; 6 N Aoki (Japan) Suzuki 1:36.323; 7 G McCoy (Aus) Yamaha 1:36.362; 8 N Abe (Japan) Yamaha 1:36.391; 9 V Rossi (It) Honda 1:36.436; 10 A Criville (Sp) Honda 1:36.546. 250cc: 1 S Nakano (Japan) Yamaha 1:37.263; 2 O Jacque (Fr) Yamaha 1:37.524; 3 F Battaini (It) Aprilia 1:37.552; 4 M Melandri (It) Aprilia 1:37.718; 5 T Ukawa (Japan) Honda 1:37.857; 6 R Waldmann (Ger) Aprilia 1:37.966; 7 D Checa (Sp) Honda 1:37.986; 8 A Debon (Sp) Aprilia 1:38.152; 9 D Kato (Japan) Honda 1:38.415; 10 F G Nieto (Sp) Yamaha 1:38.487. 125cc: 1 Y Ui (Japan) Derbi 1:41.055; 2 R Locatelli (It) Aprilia 1:41.571; 3 A de Angelis (S Marino) Honda 1:41.695; 4 N Ueda (Japan) Honda 1:41.946; 5 A Vincent (Fr) Airtel Aprilia 1:41.957; 6 L Cecchinello (It) Honda 1:42.068; 7 P Nieto (Sp) Derbi 1:42.123; 8 G Borsoi (It) Aprilia 1:42.303; 9 A Nieto (Sp) Honda 1:42.357; 10 M Azuma (Japan) Honda 1:42.372.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

The long walk west: they fled war in Syria, only to get held up in Hungary – now hundreds of refugees have set off on foot for Austria

They fled war in Syria...

...only to get stuck and sidetracked in Hungary
From The Prisoner to Mad Men, elaborate title sequences are one of the keys to a great TV series

Title sequences: From The Prisoner to Mad Men

Elaborate title sequences are one of the keys to a great TV series. But why does the art form have such a chequered history?
Giorgio Armani Beauty's fabric-inspired foundations: Get back to basics this autumn

Giorgio Armani Beauty's foundations

Sumptuous fabrics meet luscious cosmetics for this elegant look
From stowaways to Operation Stack: Life in a transcontinental lorry cab

Life from the inside of a trucker's cab

From stowaways to Operation Stack, it's a challenging time to be a trucker heading to and from the Continent
Kelis interview: The songwriter and sauce-maker on cooking for Pharrell and crying over potatoes

Kelis interview

The singer and sauce-maker on cooking for Pharrell
Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Humanity must be at the heart of politics, says Jeremy Corbyn
Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

Britain's 24-hour culture

With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
Diplomacy board game: Treachery is the way to win - which makes it just like the real thing

The addictive nature of Diplomacy

Bullying, betrayal, aggression – it may be just a board game, but the family that plays Diplomacy may never look at each other in the same way again
Lady Chatterley's Lover: Racy underwear for fans of DH Lawrence's equally racy tome

Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
8 best children's clocks

Tick-tock: 8 best children's clocks

Whether you’re teaching them to tell the time or putting the finishing touches to a nursery, there’s a ticker for that
Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea