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Not just Daytona this weekend but the MotoGP season opener at Qatar.

Rossi leads after Thursday practice #2

Colin Edwards is second

Casey Stoner 3rd on a Ducati

Summary of last year's top finishers...

Pedrosa - 6th

Melandri - 7th

Capirossi - 8th

Hayden - 15th

Observations and surprises, riders first...

Nine riders within one second

Fifteen riders within 1.5 seconds

Yamahas 1&2... Rossi in first means Rossi is riding quickly. Edwards in 2nd likely means this year's Yamaha is much more capable than last year's. Rossi on an uncompetitive bike is tough enough. Rossi on a *good* bike, well...

Stoner, Ducati, 3rd Looks like Stoner and the Ducati are a good match. He'll press Capirossi and more than a few others if he avoids crashing.

Hopkins, Suzuki, 4th Is this year's Suzuki for real? Could be!

Carlos Checa - Honda, 5th. So far Checa's the fastest of the Honda riders. Wouldn't bet on it holding up.

Pedrosa, Honda, 6th - We'll see what tomorrow brings.

Hayden - Honda 15th - struggling on the 800.

Americans - two riders in the top ten. Oddly enough, it's Hopkins and Edwards, not the two former world champs.

Spain and Italy - three riders each in the top 10

The bikes...

Yamaha - top two spots, for today, at least

Ducati - both factory bikes in the top 10 and Stoner in third

Honda - five bikes in the top ten but Hayden conspicuously absent.

Dunlop tires - Tamada's Dunlop Honda can't keep pace with the Ilmor bikes. Ouch!
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