Casey Stoner said his Ducati was close to perfection as he began his bid for a third straight home victory with pole position at Phillip Island.
The Australian dominated most of the session, although Valentino Rossi pushed him hard on the final runs and ultimately missed pole by just 0.050sec. Stoner had not been content in practice yesterday, but felt Ducati had now made progress.
"For the past two years here our bike's been perfect due to the fact that we normally have very good traction here and very good grip," he said. "This year we've improved the turn-in on corners, we've definitely got a lot more corner speed, but we've lost a bit of the rear grip coming out of the corners. So we've been working on that all weekend just to try and improve that. The general bike's been perfect. We'll just see what we can do tomorrow."
The weather has been changeable throughout the event, with rain hitting final practice this morning but qualifying seeing a mostly dry track. Although Stoner admitted he would rather have a straightforward dry race, he is confident whatever the weather.
"The track was in pretty good condition in the wet this morning, but pretty much everyone always wants a dry race," he said. "The wet's so unpredictable, one small mistake and it can be a huge one. But in both conditions the bike seems to be working quite well."