Dovizioso shines as Ducati pay tribute to Hayden


Andrea Dovizioso put in a strong showing at practice for the Italian Grand Prix as Ducati paid a poignant tribute to former MotoGP world champion Nicky Hayden.

Hayden passed away last month at the age of 35 after failing to recover from injuries sustained when he was struck by a car while riding his bicycle along the Rimini coast.

Dovizioso, as well as other Ducati riders at Mugello on Friday, raced on bikes adorned with Hayden's number 69 as a mark of respect for their late colleague.

And Dovizioso did the memory of Hayden proud, topping the timesheets in FP1 before going second fastest in the subsequent session.

Dovizioso clocked a time of one minute and 47.394 seconds in FP1, ahead of Ducati test rider Michele Pirro (+0.201secs) and standings leader Maverick Vinales of Movistar Yamaha (+0.275).

The second session saw Vinales spin off spectacularly, although he bounced straight back to his feet and was able to return on another bike before LCR Honda's Cal Crutchlow went fastest (1:47.365) ahead of Dovizioso (+0.161) and Monster Yamaha's Jonas Folger (+0.178).