-- MotoGP 2013 - Round 11 - Brno
-- Bradl blasts to top of timesheets in Brno day one
A late lap from Stefan Bradl saw the LCR Honda MotoGP rider demote Jorge Lorenzo to second place in Friday afternoon practice ahead of the bwin Grand Prix České republiky. Behind the reigning MotoGP™ World Champion, the top three was completed by last year’s winner Dani Pedrosa.
Lorenzo was fastest in both practice sessions as the Brno weekend began, but only until Bradl delivered his final 1’56.500 effort to snatch the top spot by three hundredths of a second. The German however said that keeping this pace over race distance could prove very tricky, and that him and the team need to work more on consistency. Pedrosa trailed Lorenzo by only a further six hundredths, following on from their dramatic last-lap battle at the circuit last year.
Valentino Rossi was fourth on the second Yamaha Factory Racing machine, pushing championship leader Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) down to fifth ahead of Monster Yamaha Tech3 duo Cal Crutchlow and Bradley Smith. Completing the top ten were Alvaro Bautista (GO&FUN Honda Gresini) and Ducati Team partners Andrea Dovizioso and Nicky Hayden, fresh from their final lap fight at Indianapolis.
The Ignite Pramac Racing bike was ridden by Michele Pirro, covering for Ben Spies who suffered new injuries in a crash last Saturday, whereas Austria’s Martin Bauer made his debut as a wildcard with his privately-entered Remus Racing Team outfit, ending the day 23rd in the 25-rider field. Local Czech favourites Karel Abraham (Cardion AB Motoracing, riding with an injured shoulder) and Lukas Pesek (Came IodaRacing Project) finished proceedings in respective 22nd and 24th spots.
The sole faller of the day was Gresini’s Bryan Staring, who lost control of his CRT bike during the morning session. The qualifying running order will be determined at the end of third practice, which will start at 9:55am local time (GMT +2) on Saturday.
1 Stefan Bradl 1'56.500 GER HONDA LCR Honda MotoGP
2 Jorge Lorenzo 1'56.538 SPA YAMAHA Yamaha Factory Racing
3 Dani Pedrosa 1'56.600 SPA HONDA Repsol Honda Team
4 Valentino Rossi 1'56.726 ITA YAMAHA Yamaha Factory Racing
5 Marc Marquez 1'56.733 SPA HONDA Repsol Honda Team
6 Cal Crutchlow 1'56.800 GBR YAMAHA Monster Yamaha Tech 3
7 Bradley Smith 1'57.351 GBR YAMAHA Monster Yamaha Tech 3
8 Alvaro Bautista 1'57.401 SPA HONDA Go & Fun Honda Gresini
9 Andrea Dovizioso 1'57.754 ITA DUCATI Ducati Team
10 Nicky Hayden 1'57.896 USA DUCATI Ducati Team
11 Andrea Iannone 1'58.039 ITA DUCATI Energy T.I. Pramac Racing Team
12 Aleix Espargaro 1'58.217 SPA ART Power Electronics Aspar
13 Michele Pirro 1'58.958 ITA DUCATI Ignite Pramac Racing Team
14 Hector Barbera 1'59.235 SPA FTR Avintia Blusens
15 Claudio Corti 1'59.288 ITA FTR-KAWASAKI NGM Mobile Forward Racing
16 Colin Edwards 1'59.390 USA FTR-KAWASAKI NGM Mobile Forward Racing
17 Yonny Hernandez 1'59.539 COL PBM Paul Bird Motorsport
18 Hiroshi Aoyama 1'59.613 JAP FTR Avintia Blusens
19 Danilo Petrucci 1'59.719 ITA IODA-SUTER Came IodaRacing Project
20 Randy De Puniet 1'59.799 FRA SUZUKI Suzuki Test Team
21 Michael Laverty 2'00.338 GBR PBM Paul Bird Motorsport
22 Karel Abraham 2'00.413 CZE ART Cardion AB Motoracing
23 Martin Bauer 2'00.730 AUT S&B SUTER Remus Racing Team
24 Lukas Pesek 2'01.549 CZE IODA-SUTER Came IodaRacing Project
25 Bryan Staring 2'01.746 AUS FTR-HONDA Go & Fun Honda Gresini
Mika Kallio set the pace in Friday afternoon practice ahead of the bwin Grand Prix České republiky. The Marc VDS Racing Team rider led the way from Italtrans Racing Team’s Takaaki Nakagami and Tuenti HP 40’s Pol Espargaro, although it was Espargaro’s morning time that established the overall pace for the day.
Recovering from a crash in the morning, Nakagami looked set to go quickest in the afternoon, only for Kallio to top the timesheets with his last effort. As the Finn led the way, Nakagami and Espargaro were separated by fractions while Indianapolis winner Tito Rabat (Tuenti HP 40) and Johann Zarco (Came Iodaracing Project) rounded out the top five. It was a relatively quiet day for Redding, ending proceedings eighth, but title rival Espargaro set the fastest overall lap time with 2’03.125 in the morning.
A selection of riders hit trouble during the day, not least Thai Honda PTT Gresini Moto2’s Thitipong Warokorn who suffered a non-displaced fracture of his right fibula after crashing in the first session; the Thai rookie was able to continue in the afternoon. Three riders would crash in the afternoon: Axel Pons (Tuenti HP 40), Alex de Angelis (NGM Mobile Forward Racing) and Dani Rivas (Blusens Avintia).
Maverick Viñales set the pace in both Moto3™ practice sessions as the bwin Grand Prix České republiky weekend began at Brno on Friday. The Team Calvo rider led Estrella Galicia 0,0’s Alex Marquez and Red Bull KTM Ajo’s Luis Salom.
Less than a week after the crash at Indianapolis that left him with an injured left foot, championship leader Salom was heading the afternoon session until a last-gasp lap from Viñales saw the latter post 2’08.504. Second-placed Marquez was three hundredths of a second off the leading pace and has demonstrated consistency all day.
Completing the top five were Marquez’s teammate Alex Rins – winner of the last two races, at the Sachsenring and Indianapolis – and Mapfre Aspar Team Moto3’s Jonas Folger, as conditions varied between overcast and bright spells.
There was a fall for Ajo’s Zulfahmi Khairuddin in the afternoon, whereas incidents came in the morning session for both Isaac Viñales (Ongetta-Centro Seta) and Francesco Bagnaia (San Carlo Team Italia). Just one practice session now remains ahead of qualifying, with last year’s pole position having gone to Maverick Viñales.
-- Red Bull Rookies
With his final qualifying lap, local hero, 17-year-old Karel Hanika, stole pole position from 16-year-old Turk Toprak Razgatlıoğlu for Saturday's Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup race in Brno. Completing the front row of the grid for the Czech Grand Prix is 15-year-old Italian Enea Bastianini.
A change of schedule for the rest of the season gives the riders two free practice sessions and a single qualifying session to take the pressure off newcomers who have to learn the circuits. From the start of the 25 minute qualifying period Hanika was determined, his first flying lap was over half a second quicker than the lap record and 1.2 seconds quicker than anyone else.
“I was enjoying it,” said Hanika. “I was in a big group and I then realised that the front suspension was not quite perfect so I came into the pits to make a change. I went out again and tried to improve but it still wasn't right and I was making some mistakes so came in again.”
By then Razgatlıoğlu had taken the initiative and was looking very impressive as he reeled off the quick laps at the top of the leader board. With just a few minutes remaining Hanika came out of the pits. His first flying lap was a string of red helmets on the timing monitors but as he flashed across the line it showed he had missed pole by 0.001.
“When I came out for the last time the bike felt good and I went for a good time. I just made a small mistake in the final section but then the last lap was good, no mistakes. The bike is really working well now and I am looking forward to a good race, Toprak did a great job and I am sure it will be a close race with him and the other guys.”
Razgatlıoğlu was not too upset to have lost pole. “The main thing is that the bike is working well, I am really enjoying it. It is the first time since Austin at the beginning of the year that the bike is really right for me, we seemed to lose our way with the settings after that. This is a great track, I have raced here once on a 600 and lapped at 2m 09s so I knew my way round.”
Though Bastianini was 3rd, the Brno first timer feels there is still room for improvement. “The front isn't quite right so that is limiting me at the moment. It is a great track though, so wide and it is not easy to learn. I am enjoying it very much, cutting the kerbs on the inside to get the fastest lines,” he said with his usual grin.
Bastianini's feelings on bike setting were echoed by fourth placed Jorge Martín, the 15-year-old Spaniard who lies second in the title chase behind Hanika and shared the victory honours with him in the previous round at the Sachsenring. “It just makes it tough, the front isn't right this weekend and I can't ride the way I want to. I pushed very hard at the end to get a good time, 4th is not bad but I can't say I'm happy with the bike.”
-- Yamaha Report
Yamaha Factory Racing riders Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi both made a flying start today in the first practice sessions for this Sunday’s Grand Prix of the Czech Republic.
The benefit of a recent private test at the Brno circuit was clear to see as Lorenzo shot straight to the top of the time sheets at the beginning of the first practice and remained unchallenged throughout. By the end of the session he was within one second off the pole record for the track and wrapped up the only rider under the 1’57 mark with a 1’56.698 second lap.
The afternoon practice saw him start in the same fashion, quickly taking the top spot and going under his morning time with a 1’56.538. The reigning world champion then spent the remainder of the session testing various settings with his YZR-M1, finishing the day second in the combined times, 0.038 seconds from the top.
Valentino Rossi’s morning was equally successful, the Italian cracking straight on to the pace as the session got underway and mixing times with the top three riders. His first run saw him get down to a 1’57.425 lap. With 35 minutes remaining of the session he was in second position, improving on his second run to get down to a 1’57.243 lap.
The nine-time world champion made another big step in the afternoon, breaking into the 1’56s with a 1’56.726 to take fourth overall and separated from the top rider by just 0.226 seconds.
Jorge Lorenzo 2nd | 1'56.538 | 19 Laps - “I started in a very good way in the morning and also in the beginning of the second practice. Then we started to try some things on the bike that weren’t as good as we expected. We spent all the practice trying things so I wasn't very fast at the end of the session. Anyway, the positive thing is tomorrow we have a clear direction so we can go more quickly to a better lap time. We can improve tomorrow on braking, and the smoothness of the bike at the beginning of the corner.”
Valentino Rossi 4th | 1'56.726 | 29 Laps - “I think that we are equal at this track because Dani won last year with the Honda after the battle with Jorge on the last lap. For sure the Yamaha is more competitive here in Brno and also I am more competitive because I like the track and I ride in a better way than in Indianapolis. Today it was a positive day for me, especially this afternoon, we modified the bike and I improved a lot. I was fast with the soft tyre and the hard tyre and I have quite a good pace. We are all very close; we are five or six riders within a few tenths. We hope for tomorrow and Sunday we have good weather because the forecast says it’s not so positive.”
Wilco Zeelenberg - Yamaha Factory Racing Team Manager - “It’s the first day in Brno and we are quite satisfied with the result. The pace is very consistent and Jorge feels good on the bike. We need to make some small adjustments tomorrow so let’s hope it stays dry. We are on the right path to getting a good result.”
Massimo Meregalli - Yamaha Factory Racing Team Director - “It’s been a positive first day. We still have a lot of things to try and improve the set up as much as we can. Anyway we have started in the right way. We have a big advantage as we tested here a few weeks ago so we will try to keep this step ahead until Sunday afternoon. We were able to test both tyre compounds. It seems both are working but one slightly better than the other. We are in a good shape and we are optimistic we can continue like this.”
The start of the 11th round of the 2013 MotoGP World Championship in Brno saw Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team riders Cal Crutchlow and Bradley Smith in fast and consistent form at the end of a closely contested opening day of practice.
After the long trip back to Europe from last weekend’s Indianapolis round in America, Crutchlow and Smith quickly got back down to business and were able to set the sixth and seventh fastest times respectively in sunny and warm conditions.
Crutchlow has fond memories of the fast and undulating Brno track, as it was a year ago at the Czech Republic venue that he scored a career first MotoGP podium.
The British rider’s quest for a repeat of that success got off to a flying start this morning when he set the third best time in FP1, while continuing to work on a new fuel tank and seat unit upgrade he raced for the first time at the legendary Indianapolis Motor Speedway five days ago.
This afternoon’s second 45-minute session was an incredibly close battle, with a personal best time of 1.56.800 putting Crutchlow in sixth position.
His time was only 0.300s off the fastest pace and just 0.2s outside of the top three, with Crutchlow optimistic that he has the pace to challenge at the front for a fifth podium of the season in Sunday’s 22-lap race.
Smith’s encouraging form in his rookie premier class campaign continued on a positive day for the 22-year-old, who was comfortably lapping inside the top 10 in both sessions.
Eighth fastest this morning, Smith shaved over 0.5s off his pace in hotter conditions in FP2 to climb up the rankings into seventh and he was only just over 0.5s behind teammate Crutchlow.
All six riders in front of Smith today have won a race or finished on the podium in 2013 and his performance is further evidence of the outstanding progress he is making in his first premier class campaign.
Cal Crutchlow 6th 1.56.800 – 32 laps : “It wasn’t an easy first day here in Brno but the positive point is I was very consistent and the lap times between the top six are very close. The overall lap time is not the best but I am able to lap in the 56s consistently and that is encouraging for the rest of the weekend. We need to improve the bike, so I am hoping it stays dry tomorrow and we can try the modifications we need to improve. I can’t turn the bike well and I am also struggling a little bit for rear grip. I got my first podium in Brno last year and it would be great to repeat that achievement on Sunday. It will be tough but I will be giving it my all.”
Bradley Smith 7th 1.57.351– 32 laps : “Today was a positive start to the weekend although I encountered a couple of small issues with the front-end. I need to get some more grip to allow me to carry more corner speed but I am happy because I was able to make a big step in the second session. This is a track that the Yamaha really likes and I am enjoying riding the YZR-M1 here, so if I can get some more confidence with the front I am sure I can be even stronger. It is going to be difficult to make that final step to get into the 56s but we will pour over the data tonight and try and find a solution to help me do that.”
-- Repsol HRC
Round eleven of the MotoGP World Championship kicked off today in the Czech Republic. Repsol Honda's Dani Pedrosa and Championship leader Marc Marquez had a productive day aboard their Honda RC213V machines.
Dani was third fastest in the combined times with a time of 1'56.600 on lap 11 of 16, just 0.1s off the fastest time (Stefan Bradl 1'56.500). Teammate Marc was 5th fastest for the day with his best lap of 1'56.733 arriving on lap 7 of 17.
Dani Pedrosa 3rd 1'56.600
"Today was a little more difficult than expected, as I felt more pain than I have in the past few days. I was unable to ride at 100%, but still we were able to have two good sessions. We tried some different setups with the bike and different tyres. Let's see if tomorrow I feel better and can improve aspects of the bike to lower my time"
Marc Marquez 5th 1'56.733
"I felt really good from the start which is good news! I thought it would take a little more time and that we would be further behind Jorge and Valentino, as they have tested at this circuit recently. In general, the feeling was good but there are still aspects of the setup where we can improve a lot, which will hopefully give us more comfort and in the end more speed. I'm not worried, we know that tomorrow the times will come down, but we must continue working in the same way and focus, because we know that we can perfect the setup"
-- Ducati Report
Just five days after racing in the Indianapolis GP, Andrea Dovizioso and Nicky Hayden were back on track today in the first two free-practice sessions for the Czech Republic GP.
Neither Ducati Team rider was able to find a good setup for his Desmosedici GP13, as both complained of a lack of grip on the fast, flowing Brno circuit. At day’s end, Dovizioso and Hayden sat ninth and tenth, respectively, in the combined times, determined to work with their teams tomorrow morning to make better headway ahead of qualifying.
Andrea Dovizioso - Ducati Team, 9th (1:57.754) - “The afternoon session was very strange, because we suffered a big loss of grip. Honestly, I thought there was something wrong with my bike because I didn’t expect such a big difference compared to this morning. We tried a number of things in an effort to understand if there was some problem, so we weren’t able to follow the planned work program for the session. Unfortunately, when the temperature rises, it affects us Ducati riders more than the others, and it becomes much more difficult to ride the bike well.”
Nicky Hayden - Ducati Team, 10th (1:57.896) - “It wasn’t a very positive day. This morning we weren’t so far off, but in the afternoon I struggled with a lack of grip, problems turning, and chatter. I also made some mistakes with my riding and was running wide. Now we need to understand exactly where to go with the bike’s setup and try to do a much better job tomorrow.”
-- Bridgestone Report
Bridgestone slick compounds available: Front: Soft & Hard. Rear: Soft, Medium & Hard (Asymmetric)
Bridgestone wet tyre compounds available: Soft (Main), Hard (Alternative)
Weather: FP1 - Dry. Ambient 19-20°C; Track 23-24°C (Bridgestone measurement)
FP2 - Dry. Ambient 25-28°C; Track 38-38°C (Bridgestone measurement)
LCR Honda’s Stefan Bradl topped the timesheets in Friday free practice at the Czech Republic Grand Prix, the German rider setting a time of 1’56.500 on his penultimate lap of the day to lead a tightly-packed field at Brno.
Bradl spent his first stint in FP2 evaluating the hard compound rear slick before a late switch to the softer rear unleashed the potential of his Honda RC213V, enabling the German rider to finish the day 0.038 seconds quicker than his closest challenger, Yamaha Factory Racing’s Jorge Lorenzo. Having finished top in the morning FP1 session, Lorenzo’s best time in FP2 saw him narrowly miss the top spot, but placed him 0.062 seconds ahead of Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa who ended the day third overall. Once again Power Electronics Aspar’s Aleix Espargaro was the quickest of the CRT riders, his best lap time of 1'58.217 sees the Spaniard end the day twelfth overall.
Conditions throughout the day at Brno were fine, with track temperatures reaching a peak of 38°C in the afternoon FP2 session. The fine weather allowed the riders to test a wide range of tyres, with all five slick options brought by Bridgestone to this race evaluated today. The cooler morning session saw riders prefer the softer slick options front and rear, while in the afternoon session both the softer and harder slick options were used. The preferred slick options at this stage of the race weekend are the hard compound front due to its greater braking stability, while at the rear, the softer slick options – which give greater drive through the sweeping sections of this circuit were favoured. Initial feedback from those riders that used the harder rear slick options show that this option is working well when track temperatures are higher.
The weather forecast indicates a chance of rain tomorrow and Sunday, which could make the rankings from today’s practice sessions all the more important for the line-up in tomorrow afternoon’s QP sessions. The next scheduled MotoGP™ session is FP3 at 955 local time (GMT +2).
Shinji Aoki – Manager, Bridgestone Motorsport Tyre Development Department - “Today’s practice sessions went very well with all slick options evaluated today. Most riders preferred the softer front slick this morning but once the track condition improved with the warmer temperatures, most riders used the harder front as this option gives better stability in the downhill braking sections that this circuit is famous for. Although track temperatures were higher in the afternoon, there were not at a level that resulted in many works riders deciding to try their harder rear slick option, but the feedback we did receive shows that this option does work well in higher temperatures. Overall, performance of all slick options was very good and lap times are a few tenths quicker compared to the Friday practice sessions last year, so we could be in for a record-breaking qualifying session tomorrow.”
-- Previously.......MotoGP 2013 - Round Ten - Indianapolis
-- Marquez extends Championship lead to 21 points
Marc Marquez has completed a dominant weekend by winning the Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix, leading home Dani Pedrosa in the third Repsol Honda Team one-two finish of the season. Yamaha Factory Racing’s Jorge Lorenzo completed the podium as Valentino Rossi beat Cal Crutchlow and Alvaro Bautista to fourth.
Marquez’s victory ensures that the Spaniard has topped every session he has taken part in this weekend – something not done since Casey Stoner dominated the Australian Grand Prix event of last year. The victory marks Marquez’s third consecutive premier class race win and confirms a clean sweep of American successes this season, having also triumphed at Texas and Laguna Seca.
From pole position, another poor start from the 20-year-old rookie saw Marquez fall behind both Lorenzo and teammate Pedrosa. He would overtake the pair on Laps 9 and 13, respectively, and – as his rivals continued to feel the effects of injured collarbones – would cross the finish line almost three and a half seconds ahead.
Pedrosa looked to be finishing the 27-lap race in third position, but sprang a surprise by slipstreaming ahead of Lorenzo at the start of the penultimate lap. For both Pedrosa and Lorenzo, this marked their first podium finishes since the Catalan Grand Prix in Barcelona some two months ago. In fourth place, Lorenzo’s teammate Rossi rose from ninth on the grid and only on the final tour got the better of Monster Yamaha Tech3’s Crutchlow and GO&FUN Honda Gresini’s Bautista, who had enjoyed a race-long battle. Stefan Bradl finished seventh for LCR Honda MotoGP.
Rounding out the top ten were Crutchlow’s teammate Bradley Smith and Ducati Team pairing Nicky Hayden and Andrea Dovizioso; the English debutant (who had run as high as fourth on Lap 1, thanks to a superb start) leapfrogged both of the red bikes as Hayden pushed Dovizioso wide at the final corner. This was a near repeat of a final-corner incident at Assen from which Smith also benefitted.
Four riders failed to finish the race. Attack Performance Racing wildcard Blake Young crashed on the opening lap, where problems hit Randy de Puniet (Power Electronics Aspar), Lukas Pesek (Came IodaRacing Project) and Yonny Hernandez (PBM). Unable to race were both Ignite Pramac Racing’s Ben Spies, whose comeback was ruined when he separated his left shoulder on Friday, and Cardion AB Motoracing’s Karel Abraham who heavily bruised a foot and shoulder, also on Day 1.
Heading to next weekend’s bwin Grand Prix České republiky at Brno, Marquez (188 points) has extended his championship lead to 21 points from Pedrosa (167). Reigning World Champion Lorenzo (153) now sits 35 points behind the leader.
- Race Result - Round 10
1 Marc Marquez 44'52.463 SPA HONDA Repsol Honda Team
2 Dani Pedrosa +3.495 SPA HONDA Repsol Honda Team
3 Jorge Lorenzo +5.704 SPA YAMAHA Yamaha Factory Racing
4 Valentino Rossi +19.895 ITA YAMAHA Yamaha Factory Racing
5 Cal Crutchlow +19.955 GBR YAMAHA Monster Yamaha Tech 3
6 Alvaro Bautista +20.061 SPA HONDA Go & Fun Honda Gresini
7 Stefan Bradl +24.842 GER HONDA LCR Honda MotoGP
8 Bradley Smith +40.690 GBR YAMAHA Monster Yamaha Tech 3
9 Nicky Hayden +40.701 USA DUCATI Ducati Team
10 Andrea Dovizioso +40.823 ITA DUCATI Ducati Team
11 Andrea Iannone +59.668 ITA DUCATI Energy T.I. Pramac Racing Team
12 Aleix Espargaro +1'06.650 SPA ART Power Electronics Aspar
13 Colin Edwards +1'09.462 USA FTR-KAWASAKI NGM Mobile Forward Racing
14 Claudio Corti +1'15.207 ITA FTR-KAWASAKI NGM Mobile Forward Racing
15 Hiroshi Aoyama +1'20.159 JAP FTR Avintia Blusens
16 Hector Barbera +1'25.879 SPA FTR Avintia Blusens
17 Danilo Petrucci +1'29.616 ITA IODA-SUTER Came IodaRacing Project
18 Michael Laverty +1'36.388 GBR PBM Paul Bird Motorsport
19 Bryan Staring +1 lap AUS FTR-HONDA Go & Fun Honda Gresini
20 Yonny Hernandez DNF COL PBM Paul Bird Motorsport
21 Lukas Pesek DNF CZE IODA-SUTER Came IodaRacing Project
22 Randy De Puniet DNF FRA SUZUKI Suzuki Test Team
23 Blake Young DNF USA APR CRT Attack Performance
-- Championship standings
1 Marc Marquez 188 pts SPA HONDA Repsol Honda Team
2 Dani Pedrosa 167 pts SPA HONDA Repsol Honda Team
3 Jorge Lorenzo 153 pts SPA YAMAHA Yamaha Factory Racing
4 Valentino Rossi 130 pts ITA YAMAHA Yamaha Factory Racing
5 Cal Crutchlow 127 pts GBR YAMAHA Monster Yamaha Tech 3
6 Stefan Bradl 93 pts GER HONDA LCR Honda MotoGP
7 Andrea Dovizioso 87 pts ITA DUCATI Ducati Team
8 Alvaro Bautista 81 pts SPA HONDA Go & Fun Honda Gresini
9 Nicky Hayden 72 pts USA DUCATI Ducati Team
10 Bradley Smith 59 pts GBR YAMAHA Monster Yamaha Tech 3
11 Aleix Espargaro 56 pts SPA ART Power Electronics Aspar
12 Michele Pirro 36 pts ITA DUCATI Ignite Pramac Racing Team
13 Andrea Iannone 29 pts ITA DUCATI Energy T.I. Pramac Racing Team
14 Hector Barbera 24 pts SPA FTR Avintia Blusens
15 Colin Edwards 20 pts USA FTR-KAWASAKI NGM Mobile Forward Racing
16 Randy De Puniet 19 pts FRA SUZUKI Suzuki Test Team
17 Danilo Petrucci 18 pts ITA IODA-SUTER Came IodaRacing Project
18 Ben Spies 9 pts USA DUCATI Ignite Pramac Racing Team
19 Claudio Corti 7 pts ITA FTR-KAWASAKI NGM Mobile Forward Racing
20 Yonny Hernandez 7 pts COL PBM Paul Bird Motorsport
21 Alex De Angelis 5 pts RSM DUCATI Ignite Pramac Racing Team
22 Karel Abraham 5 pts CZE ART Cardion AB Motoracing
23 Michael Laverty 3 pts GBR PBM Paul Bird Motorsport
24 Bryan Staring 2 pts AUS FTR-HONDA Go & Fun Honda Gresini
25 Hiroshi Aoyama 2 pts JAP FTR Avintia Blusens
26 Javier Del Amor 1 pts SPA FTR Avintia Blusens
27 Ivan Silva 0 pts SPA FTR Avintia Blusens
28 Lukas Pesek 0 pts CZE IODA-SUTER Came IodaRacing Project
29 Blake Young 0 pts USA APR CRT Attack Performance
-- Moto 2
Tito Rabat has won for the second time in Moto2™, pulling a late pass on Takaaki Nakagami to triumph in Sunday’s Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix. Following another spirited battle, Scott Redding increased his title-leading advantage by beating Pol Espargaro to the final podium position.
Victory for Rabat is the Spaniard’s second after Jerez earlier this year. The Tuenti HP 40 rider – teammate to Espargaro – came from fourth place on the grid, having run fifth in the opening stages of the race. His other teammate, Axel Pons, did not make the start (due to a fever) which left 32 riders on the grid.
A strong getaway for pole-sitter Redding allowed the Englishman (Marc VDS Racing Team) to fend off Espargaro and lead into the first corner. Nakagami (Italtrans Racing Team) was third, but pulled a strong manoeuvre on Espargaro to seize second spot at Turn 10. On the second lap, Nakagami stole the lead from Redding and – pushing for a first win – would not lose the top spot until Lap 23.
Rabat’s charge came very much in the second half of the race, first overhauling Redding on Lap 19 before carrying out a confident pass on teammate Espargaro two laps later. The move for the lead came at Turn 1 on the 23rd lap of 25, denying Nakagami his career-first victory. Behind, Espargaro – who had started second to Redding – fought his major rival, but ran wide at the second corner and was forced to fend off Technomag carXpert’s Dominique Aegerter for the rest of the race.
Positions six to ten were filled by Simone Corsi (NGM Mobile Racing), Mika Kallio (Marc VDS Racing Team), Johann Zarco (Came Iodaracing Project), Xavier Simeon (Maptaq SAG Zelos Team) and Sachsenring race winner Jordi Torres (Aspar Team Moto2). Blusens Avintia’s Kyle Smith was the only faller, crashing out on Lap 12.
Heading to Brno and the Czech round of the World Championship next weekend, Redding’s championship lead over Espargaro has been stretched out to 26 points, with 159 versus 133. Today’s race winner Rabat (113 points) remains third in the standings, now the reduced margin of 46 points in arrears of Redding.
Moto2™ Race Classification
1- Tito Rabat SPA Kalex 43:47.432
2- Takaaki Nakagami JPN Kalex +0.766
3- Scott Redding GBR Kalex +1.471
-- Moto 3
Estrella Galicia 0,0 celebrated a one-two finish in the Moto3™ Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix, as pole-sitter Alex Rins beat teammate Alex Marquez in a closely-fought battle. Maverick Viñales completed the podium as championship leader Luis Salom finished fifth from tenth place on the grid.
Following the mid-season break, Indy marked the first Moto3™ race for five weeks. For Rins and Viñales (Team Calvo) in particular, it brought a golden opportunity after championship leader Salom (Red Bull KTM Ajo) suffered a crash in qualifying and languished on the fourth row of the grid.
The 23-lap race would prove to be one of high attrition, as no less than 12 riders – over a third of the field – failed to make the finish. The first would be RW Racing GP’s Jasper Iwema who retired on the first lap, as pole winner Rins ran wide and lost the lead. A strong start from Salom saw the Mallorcan reach as high as third, but the eventual trio of Rins, Viñales and Marquez would soon pull ahead.
On Lap 11, Rins relinquished the lead to first Viñales and then Marquez, before re-taking it two laps later. Both Estrella Galicia 0,0 riders were assisted by a mistake from Viñales on Lap 14, losing the Team Calvo rider eight tenths of a second and allowing some breathing space for the pair in front of him. Rins took the chequered flag by just under two tenths of a second as Marquez – younger brother of MotoGP World Championship leader Marc – celebrated a career-first podium finish.
Following his superb start, Salom caught and passed teammate Arthur Sissis for fifth place and then overhauled Mapfre Aspar Team Moto3’s Jonas Folger for fourth, only to drop back behind both on Lap 18. He retook fifth from his teammate and would remain there at the chequered flag, ensuring the championship lead remains in his hands albeit with a smaller advantage. Ajo riders occupied places five to seven, with Malaysia’s Zulfahmi Khairuddin being the third of them.
Heading to the tenth round of the season in the Czech Republic next weekend, Salom continues to head the title race (183 points) but by the reduced margin of nine points over Viñales (174). Race winner Rins (167) remains third and now 16 points in arrears of the championship leader.
Moto3™ Race Classification
1- Alex Rins SPA KTM 41:37.200
2- Alex Marquez SPA KTM +0.177
3- Maverick Viñales SPA KTM +1.076
-- HRC Report
Repsol Honda RC213V riders Marc Marquez and Dani Pedrosa finished first and second at today’s Indianapolis Grand Prix at the iconic “Brickyard”, resuming the interrupted racing season in the best possible form as both increase their world championship points lead over closest rival Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha), third today.
It was a third win in succession for 20-year-old class rookie Marc Marquez, who had won the last two Moto2 races here in 2011 and 2012, en route to the 2012 Championship. It gave him a three-out-of-three hat-trick in the USA. He won round two in Austin, Texas in April, then the US GP at Laguna Seca before the summer break.
He now leads the Word Championship by 21 points, the youngest rider ever to do so – just one of many records the Spanish rider has smashed in his maiden MotoGP season. With two more races in the next two weekends, the contest is reaching a crescendo. Marquez now has 188 points to Pedrosa’s 167, with Lorenzo losing ground on 153.
Marquez was in top form from the start, dominating free practice and qualifying on pole for the fourth time this year. But it was Lorenzo
who led away in perfect conditions, closely pursued by Pedrosa and the rookie.
Marquez took second after eight of the 28 laps, and moved into the lead before half distance. The three stayed close, then Marquez stretched his lead to win by 3.495 seconds.
Pedrosa’s second place was hardly any less of an achievement. The 27-year-old Spaniard, who ceded the points lead to his team-mate three races ago when forced out of the German GP with a broken collarbone, is still recovering from the injury and racing in damage-control mode.
He had dropped to third behind Lorenzo, also injured at the same race … but a superhuman effort in the closing stages saw him close a gap of a second and then get back ahead with three laps remaining. Pedrosa finished the race in obvious pain, and is looking forward to continued physical improvement to help him regain further momentum, after winning two races earlier in the season to take the points lead.
Fans at the 4.216 km (2.62-mile) infield circuit, which shares part of the front straight and the famous “yard of bricks” with the historic and world-famous Indianapolis Oval, enjoyed warm and dry weather, with exciting racing for the remaining championship points. The warmer conditions made tyre choice important, with all factory riders opting for the same hard front / soft rear combination.
Sixth-placed Team GO&FUN Honda Gresini RC213V rider Alvaro Bautista played a leading role in what was eventually a three-bike battle for fourth. He had been to and fro with Cal Crutchlow (Yamaha), when the similarly mounted multi-champion Valentino Rossi caught up in the last laps. Former 125cc World Champion Bautista came off worst in a fairing-bashing brawl in the final corner. Rossi led the trio across the line almost side by side, all within two tenths of a second. Bautista uniquely uses Showa suspension and Nissin brakes, race-developing the Japanese equipment made by Honda associates.
German LCR Honda RC213V rider Stefan Bradl was ninth, after tailing Bautista until the closing stages, then losing pace after Rossi caught and passed him. Bradl was fresh off a career-best pole and second place at the last round at Laguna Seca, and was second fastest in free practice – but a tumble in qualifying dropped him to eighth on the grid, spoiling his confidence and his chances of a repeat performance.
Australian grand prix first-timer Bryan Staring (Team GO&FUN Honda Gresini FTR Honda) was 19th on the Honda CBR1000RR-powered CRT machine, on his first visit to the circuit.
An exciting race in the all-Honda-powered Moto2 class saw Tito Rabat (Tuenti HP Pons Kalex) take his second win of the year, after breaking free from the group disputing second to hunt down and pass long-time leader Takaaki Nakagami (Italtrans Racing Team Kalex), for whom second was still a career best.
Crucially for the championship, points leader Scott Redding (Marc VDS Racing Team Kalex) secured third place over his nearest rival Pol Espargaro (Tuenti HP 40 Pons Kalex), who had been closing up on the Englishman over the past three races. Redding passed Espargaro with a fierce move with three of 25 laps remaining; leaving the Spaniard with his hands full fending off Switzerland’s Dominique Aegerter (Technomag carXpert Suter).
Simone Corsi (NGM Mobile Racing Speed Up) won a four-rider battle for sixth, from Mika Kallio (Marc VDS Racing Team Kalex), Johann Zarco (Came Iodaracing Project Suter) and Xavier Simeon (Maptaq SAG Zelos Team Kalex).
Redding regained a championship cushion of more than one race win, on 159 points to Espargaro’s 133. Rabat’s 25-point win moved him closer in third, on 113.
Moto2 machines use identical race-tuned Honda CBR600 engines supplied by the organisers to guarantee close and reliable racing. Variety comes in the different prototype chassis used.
In the Moto3 class, where Honda faces rival manufacturers KTM and Mahindra, Australian Jack Miller (Caretta Technology-RTG FTR Honda) has been the most successful Honda rider. The same was expected at Indianapolis, where he again qualified on the second row of the grid. Miller made a flying start and was with the leading group when he crashed out after four of the 23 laps, suffering a suspected broken collarbone.
With his nearest championship rival Brad Binder (Ambrogio Racing Suter Honda) retiring from the race, this left the Honda action to Romano Fenati (San Carlo Team Italia FTR Honda), Ongetta-Rivacold FTR Honda rider Alexis Masbou, Alan Techer (CIP Moto3 TSR Honda), Niccolo Antonelli (GO&FUN Gresini Moto3 FTR Honda) and Isaac Vinales (Ongetta-Centro Seta FTR Honda), all locked together mid-race in a fierce seven-rider fight.
Vinales crashed out and Antonelli dropped back out of the points, but Fenati was a close ninth at the finish, Masbou and Techer still battling in 12th and 13th.
The next race is the Czech Republic GP at Brno in one week.
Marc Marquez, Repsol Honda: 1st - “I am very happy to have taken another 25 points! I knew before we came here that this would be a good opportunity and I was able to take advantage of it. I felt very good throughout the weekend, and I think this has been my best GP overall since coming into the premier class. I was first in every session, so I couldn’t ask for more. In the race I decided to follow Lorenzo and Pedrosa, trying to save my tyres at the start. When I saw that I was feeling good and had less fuel in the tank, I tried to attack. In the end I was able to break away and have some fun sliding the bike around and enjoying how good the ride was! Now we head back to Europe, where we will try to continue working in the same way and see how many points we can pick up.”
Dani Pedrosa, Repsol Honda: 2nd - “Today I gave all I had. I struggled to keep my energy up and I was forced to ride in a different way because of the pain I was suffering. It was a difficult race, because I was fighting a lot against the bike but in the end I was able to keep up my pace and take a good second place. In other conditions I’m sure we would have done better, but we did all that we could under the circumstances today and should draw that positive from the day.”
Alvaro Bautista, GO&FUN Honda Gresini, 6th - “I am really happy and I think we had a great race today. Obviously I would have preferred to finish fourth, but sixth place and the way we got it is not a bad result. Unfortunately I had to push the front harder than I would have liked in the first part of the race and we paid the price at the end, when I was unable to defend my position from Crutchlow. It’s a shame but I am happy anyway, we have a fantastic feeling with the bike right now and we are doing a good job so I want to say a special thanks to the team and the guys at Showa, Nissin and of course at Honda. Now we can look to the future with even more confidence.”
Stefan Bradl, LCR Honda MotoGP: 7th - “Honestly I am a bit disappointed about this result and I had mixed feelings this weekend. At the beginning we were very strong but after three crashes in the practices I lost a bit of confidence. We have tried to adjust the bike but, during the race those changes made it too heavy to ride. I could not keep the same speed for the whole race because I was too tired, so I lost the guys in front of me. Now I just want to move on to Brno and try to be back in the pack.”
Bryan Staring, GO&FUN Honda Gresini, 19th - “I am not happy because unfortunately compared to yesterday we didn’t have the same feeling with the bike. We tried every possible way to improve our confidence but didn’t manage it, and I say sorry to the team.”
Honda Moto2 rider quotes
Esteve Rabat, Tuenti HP40 Pons, 1st - “I made a good start and tried to hold my fourth position, because it is so difficult to pass, then Terol and Aegerter passed me. It took me two tries to get past Aegerter, but then I moved forward one by one until I was second. When the tyres started to slide I feel more confidence – I can brake later. Little by little I started to catch Nakagami. When I ride alone I can go a little faster. So I pushed and I passed him, and in the end we made a very good job.”
Takaaki Nakagami, Italtrans Racing Team, 2nd - “I’m a little disappointed for sure. From the first lap I tried 100 percent. With a full tank I had good grip, and I could pass Espargaro and Redding on the first lap. I pushed to the end, but after 15 laps I started to suffer from chatter. After that it was impossible to keep my lap time. I knew Rabat was catching me, but I could do nothing. When he passed I tried to follow, but almost crashed. Second is still my best result, so after some frustration then the summer break, it is a good way to start again.”
Scott Redding, Marc VDS Racing Team, 3rd - “I felt good at the start but I didn’t want to lead because I knew I needed to save the tyres. I could see Nakagami was using a lot of his rear tyre but after about seven laps I suddenly starting having a vibration from the rear and I was losing time in the first and last corners. After that it was all about surviving to the finish and not trying to stress the tyres too much. But when Rabat came by he was gone in a few corners, so it was obvious I had some more tyre issues and that’s a bit disappointing. The battle at the end with Pol was exciting. It was pretty tight in those first couple of corners on lap 23 but I never touched him and sometimes you have to be aggressive like that. I’m just happy to have beaten him because it is vitally important for the Championship.”
Honda Moto3 rider quotes
Romano Fenati, San Carlo Team Italia, 9th - “A better race for me, I would say. I had a good pace, but midway through the GP the tyre grip dropped away dramatically. Otherwise I could have had a better result. We had a few problems, but we were able to overcome them with a smile.
Alexis Masbou, Ongetta-Rivacold, 12th - “A difficult weekend – I have broken ligaments in my left wrist, due to an old injury that came out again one month ago. Doctors did their best, and I’m satisfied because, though not at 100 percent I still managed a good race. In qualifying I made a mistake that left me with little time to try a fast lap with new tyres, which spoiled my grid position. Anyway, my best race lap is better than last year’s Honda best.”
Alan Techer, CIP Moto3, 13th - “For me it has been a good race. My chassis is good, I have confidence in it and my feeling is excellent. We should have some more power because in the straights the KTMs are impossible to follow.”
-- Yamaha Report
Reigning World Champion Jorge Lorenzo marked his return to fitness today with third in the Indianapolis Grand Prix, his fifth premier class podium finish at the US track. He impressed with a stunning start from second on the grid, out dragging both Marc Marquez and Dani Pedrosa to take the hole-shot into turn one. Lorenzo immediately built a half second gap and managed to hold the lead on a track not best suited to the Yamaha until Marquez squeezed past with 15 laps to go. Marquez was not allowed to break away and Lorenzo kept with him until fatigue set in as the race wound down and he was forced to relinquish second to Pedrosa with three laps remaining.
This important podium whilst still recovering from surgery allows Lorenzo to now return to European tracks favoured by the YZR-M1 in full fitness and just 15 points behind Pedrosa in third on 153 points.
Teammate Valentino Rossi’s race proved to be the opposite of Lorenzo’s. The Italian nine-time world champion spent the early part of the race fighting with a less than perfect set up as he made up ground from his ninth position start on the grid. Nicky Hayden was dispatched on the second lap for eighth and fellow Yamaha rider Bradley Smith would follow. With just six laps remaining it was clear Rossi had saved the best for last, hunting down Alvaro Bautista and Cal Crutchlow who were fighting for fourth. Rossi joined the battle, swapping positions repeatedly until a stunning pass on the second to last corner of the last lap saw him steal fourth from Crutchlow and hold it to the line.
The result keeps Rossi in fourth in the overall standings with 130 points, three clear of Crutchlow in fourth. Rossi and the team will now head directly to Brno for the second of three consecutive back-to-back races.
Jorge Lorenzo - 3rd / +5.704 / 27 laps
“I made a very good start and I had half a second advantage in the beginning of the race. I had a lot of hope because I knew I had a good pace but suddenly in the middle of the race Marc started to go faster and faster so it was impossible to win. I’m disappointed to not finish second, because in normal conditions without the drop in rear tyre this would have been possible. I’m happy to be back on the podium at a track that’s not normally a good one for us. I don’t feel perfect, I feel more tired than normal because I haven’t trained so much in the last two months because of the injuries. I felt tired at the end of the race and had some pain in the braking areas but I feel much better and in Brno and Silverstone I will be ok. I think from this moment we can only be better and better.”
Valentino Rossi - 4th / +19.895 / 27 laps
“At the end the race was not so bad, especially compared with yesterday and especially the second half. I could ride the bike in a good way and I could enjoy it. I did a very good lap time in the second half and had great battles with Bradl and Bautista, but especially with Cal on the last lap, that was very funny. Fourth place here is good considering this track is one of the worst for me and considering I started from ninth I am quite happy. We still have to work and understand why in the first laps I can’t ride the bike and use the extra grip of the tyre. In the second part when the tyre slides I can enter the corner faster, I can go faster and I can make good lap times so we have to improve because the first three riders are very strong.”
Yamaha Factory Racing Wilco Zeelenberg - Team Manager - “The Indianapolis race is finished and we have to be pleased with third. We hoped for second place because I think that was our pace but finally the tyre dropped a lot on the end so we have to investigate what happened exactly. Anyway, to be back after injuries and be fighting again with Marc and Dani for victory is great, the first 20 laps especially looked very good. Jorge was riding well and the bike behaved quite good. I think the guys all did a good job so we just have to investigate the tyre drop. We had the same last year when we lost ten seconds on Dani and this year five or six seconds in total on the race winner. We are improving at Indy, maybe next year we can win here.”
Yamaha Factory Racing Massimo Meregalli - Team Director - “Even if we knew since the beginning that Indianapolis was going to be a tough race for us I have to congratulate the team as they have done a fantastic job. We led for part of the race, Jorge had a really good rhythm and he was able to get an important podium for the Championship, that was the target and the main goal. Also Valentino, even if he couldn't find the right set up, got the right balance of the bike and when the tyre dropped he made an impressive come back. Third and fourth is a good result here and now we go back to some circuits in Europe where we can change the direction of the Championship in our favour.”
Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team rider Cal Crutchlow ended an intriguing Indianapolis MotoGP race in fifth position this afternoon, the British rider playing a leading role in one of the most intense battles in the 27-lap clash.
Engaged in a frenetic fight for the majority of the race with Spaniard Alvaro Bautista, the tussle for fourth position became a three-way battle, with nine-times World Champion Valentino Rossi riding into contention with a brilliant late attack. All three treated a crowd of just over 60,000 fans to some breathless action, with the trio constantly exchanging overtakes before the exciting battle came right down to the final corner. Crutchlow had produced an outstanding final lap to keep Rossi and Bautista at bay and fourth position seemed to have been secured behind dominant Spanish trio Marc Marquez, Dani Pedrosa and Jorge Lorenzo. After 44 minutes of nail-biting action though there was still time for one final dramatic twist, with Rossi executing a last ditch overtake at the final corner to push Crutchlow back into fifth. Less than 0.2s split Rossi, Crutchlow and Bautista at the finish line and the crowd were on their feet to show their appreciation at witnessing such a fierce but fair fight.
Bradley Smith secured his seventh top 10 finish of the season, the British rider’s race starting and finishing in tremendously exciting fashion. Smith got a stunning launch off the line and on the first lap he held fourth place before he slipped back into a fight with Andrea Dovizioso and Nicky Hayden for eighth. The 22-year-old exerted constant pressure on his more experienced counterparts and his determination and hard work was rewarded when Hayden and Dovizioso ran off track at the final corner. Smith pounced on the opportunity to win a drag race to the finish line and he claimed a hard fought eighth spot by the narrowest of margins over home crowd favourite Hayden. Smith’s excellent performance also elevated him into the top 10 in the World Championship standings for the first time in his rookie campaign.
Cal Crutchlow 5th - “I’m really pleased to finish the race in the top five and it means I am still the leading satellite bike in the Championship, which is an achievement to be proud of. It was a really good battle out there and I enjoyed it a lot. All of us were pushing at our absolute maximum and Alvaro rode fantastic. Credit to Valentino as well because he recovered quite a lot of time and it is not easy to do that towards the end of the race. I knew it was going to come down to the last lap and probably the last corner and I did my best to keep fourth. But unfortunately Valentino made a good move up the inside of the right before the last corner and I couldn’t get him back. I had a lot of fun though I think the three of us gave the American fans something to cheer. I’ve only lost two points to Valentino in the Championship on a track I don’t like at all. I was strong all weekend, so that gives me a lot of confidence for the next races in Brno and Silverstone where I was very competitive at last season.”
Bradley Smith 8th - “I think eighth position was more or less what we had predicted for the race, but we did not expect to be so far behind the winner. The race was very exciting and I got an amazing start but pretty much right from the first lap I felt we had an issue with the rear end of the bike. I tried to maintain my pace but unfortunately I ran off in at Turn 6 and a few guys passed me. I tried to recover again but the rear problem was getting worse and at the end of the race I could only try to pass the Ducatis. I was a bit lucky that they ran wide in the last corner, so I could pass both on the final straight. Eighth is not a bad result but I’m a little bit disappointed because we did a really good job during the whole weekend and I was very confident for the race. Now I just hope I can carry the good performances from practice and qualifying into Brno.”
-- Ducati Report
At the last of three MotoGP rounds to be held on American soil this season, Ducati Team riders Nicky Hayden and Andrea Dovizioso finished today’s race in ninth and tenth positions, respectively, at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
As has been the case on many occasions this year, the evenly matched teammates found themselves dicing with one another for the entire race aboard their Desmosedici GP13 machines. Positions were traded on several occasions, and on the final lap, the American tried a last-corner pass on Dovizioso for eighth place. The two made contact and ran off the track, which allowed Bradley Smith to pass them both on the run to the finish line.
Tomorrow, the Ducati Team heads to the Czech Republic, where the second of three races on consecutive weekends will take place at the Brno circuit.
Nicky Hayden - Ducati Team, 9th
“We’d hoped for more. We found a direction in qualifying yesterday, but when the tyre got a few laps on it in the race, we lost rear grip. Early, I was trying to hang with Rossi, but as soon as the tyre went away, I made a little mistake and he was gone. From there, I was just racing with Dovi, and he really pushes and doesn’t make many mistakes. We went back and forth a lot, and then in the last corner on the last lap, we had contact, which was my fault. When the door started to close, I was already committed and didn’t want him to take out my front wheel. Unfortunately, Smith still beat us to the line. It’s a shame, but we still need to improve the bike over race distance. The race went better than last year, and the fans were great to me, but I would’ve liked to put up a better fight than that.”
Andrea Dovizioso - Ducati Team, 10th
“The race went more or less as I expected. The goal was to finish with a 1’40” pace, but unfortunately, the rear tyre started to lose grip on both sides in the last ten laps, so the race became a strategic battle between Nicky and me. I’m fairly pleased with how I managed my race because I was able to pass him back on the final lap, but in the last corner, he wanted to get by me at any cost, using a really aggressive manoeuvre. I didn’t expect it because I hadn’t left the door open. Nicky came beside me and we touched, and it certainly wasn’t a safe move, but we can say it was a racing incident. We were called to Race Direction because of course it’s important to talk about these things and immediately clear them up. Honestly, I’m quite annoyed to have lost two positions, and I also wanted to keep Smith behind me. Still, there’s no sense in creating controversy in a situation like this, so for me it’s over.”
Paolo Ciabatti – Ducati MotoGP Project Director
“It was a difficult race for our team. In the early going, Nicky and Andrea stayed in contact with the rest of the group, but in the final ten laps, the drop in performance of the rear tyres slowed our riders' pace, and they found themselves trading positions a couple times and fighting with each other for eighth place. Unfortunately, Nicky tried to pass Dovizioso in the final corner, even though there was limited space. The two riders touched and went over the curb, and Smith was able to pass them both at the finish line. Nicky and Andrea talked afterward to clear things up, and there was no controversy. The fact remains that we can’t be satisfied with a result like today’s, so we must grit our teeth and try even harder to improve the performance of our bikes.”
-- Bridgestone Report
Bridgestone slick compounds available: Front: Soft & Hard. Rear: Soft, Medium & Hard (Asymmetric)
Bridgestone wet tyre compounds available: Soft (Main), Hard (Alternative)
Weather: Dry. Ambient 29-30°C; Track 47-53°C (Bridgestone measurement)
There was no stopping Marc Marquez at Indianapolis MotorSpeedway this weekend, the Repsol Honda rounding out a relentless performance by taking the chequered flag today for his third consecutive MotoGP™ victory to sweep all races held in the United States of America this season.
Starting from pole position, Marquez lost out to teammate Dani Pedrosa and Yamaha Factory Racing’s Jorge Lorenzo at the start of the race to trail his two rivals for the opening laps. Marquez overtook Pedrosa on lap nine and seized the race lead from Lorenzo on lap thirteen, before streaking away to win by 3.495 seconds. Pedrosa fended off the challenge of Lorenzo to finish in second place, with the reigning MotoGP™ champion Lorenzo placing third. Power Electronics Aspar’s Aleix Espargaro rode valiantly with an injured hand to finish as the top CRT entry in twelfth place.
Track temperatures for the race peaked at 53°C, however the temperature at the start of the race was in the mid-forty degree mark and all works riders, and all except four CRT riders, selected their softer rear slick option for the race. Front tyre choice was identical across the field, with all riders using the harder front slick. Although track temperatures increased throughout the race, the softer rear tyre options exhibited consistent degradation with a new race lap record of 1’39.044 set by Marquez on the eighteenth lap of the race.
Marquez’s third straight victory extends his lead in the championship standings over teammate Pedrosa to twenty-one points, with Lorenzo third in the standings and a further fourteen points behind.
Hiroshi Yamada – Manager, Bridgestone Motorsport Department
“That was certainly a very eventful end to what was a fantastic race! Congratulations to Marc for his dominant display this weekend and to Repsol Honda on securing their third 1-2 finish this season. With the good news that MotoGP will return to Indianapolis next year, I am sure the fans appreciated seeing such great action here this weekend, and I hope to see an even larger crowd here next year. We now return to Europe and I am very much looking forward to seeing the next chapter of this brilliant championship fight unfold at Brno.”
Masao Azuma – Chief Engineer, Bridgestone Motorsport Tyre Development Department
“With track temperatures today no higher than experienced in qualifying yesterday, all works riders and most of the CRT riders decided to use their softer rear slick option for the race. Front tyre choice was the same for all riders, with the hard compound front slick being selected and this combination resulted in very quick lap times in the race. The medium compound slick, which was the softer choice for the works riders performed very well in the conditions with a fast race pace and new Circuit Record Lap being set in the second half of the race. The performance of our tyres this weekend makes me very happy as new qualifying and race lap records were set and we enjoyed good tyre durability at this very demanding circuit.”
Marc Marquez, Repsol Honda – Race Winner
“I didn’t get a good start but I knew before the race that the most important part was the end of the race. For the first few laps I just focused on following Dani and Jorge and conserving the tyres and once I got past them I felt so good with the bike and managed to build a gap. I really enjoyed the race and the twenty-five points are important for the championship.”
-- MARC VDS Report
A sixth podium in nine races extended Marc VDS Racing rider Scott Redding's lead in the Moto2 World Championship to 26-points after a tough Brickyard battle at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway this afternoon.
In a 25-lap race where excessive rear tyre wear once again hampered Redding's victory challenge, the 20-year-old managed to crucially overhaul main title rival Pol Espargaro for the final podium position after a fascinating battle between the two main Moto2 protagonists.
Having finished behind Espargaro in the previous three races, Redding was determined not to beaten again, despite grip issues costing him valuable time exiting the final corner and entering the fast approach to the first turn.
Demonstrating controlled aggression to preserve his tyres for the crucial final phase of the race in gruelling heat that hit almost 30 degrees, Redding's ruthless and brave move on Espargaro to secure third at the start of lap 23 typified his desire and commitment to capture the Moto2 title.
Tyre preservation was a key strength of Mika Kallio, the Finnish rider brilliantly maintaining his pace on worn rubber in the final laps. He ended lap 15 down in 13th position but a stunning late charge saw him climb up from 10th to seventh in the last two laps to keep himself firmly in the hunt for third position in the Championship.
Livio Loi's excellent debut at the famous Brickyard track ended in fine style, the Belgian rider securing a career best 14th place finish in the 23-lap Moto3 race.
Loi took full advantage of a career best qualifying performance yesterday and after starting 11th he was locked a big battle for the top 10 in the early laps.
A mistake while downshifting at Turn 10 on lap six cost him three seconds and dropped him out of the top 15. But he was able to launch a terrific recovery and by lap 16 he'd moved back inside the points-scoring places.
His consistently fast lap times in the 1.49 bracket impressively matched the pace of several of his rivals in the top 10, and at the chequered flag Loi collected two World Championship points, which moves him within touching distance of the top 20 in the overall rankings.
The Marc VDS Racing Team now heads back to Europe for next weekend's Brno race in the Czech Republic, which is immediately followed by Redding's vital home round at Silverstone on 1 September.
Scott Redding #45: 3rd
"I felt good at the start but I didn't want to lead because I knew I needed to save the tyres. I could see Nakagami was using a lot of his rear tyre but after about seven laps I suddenly starting having a vibration from the rear and I was losing time in the first and last corner. After that it was all about surviving to the finish and not trying to stress the tyres too much. But when Rabat came by he was gone in a few corners, so it was obvious I had some more tyre issues and that's a bit disappointing. The battle at the end with Pol was exciting. It was pretty tight in those first couple of corners on lap 23 but I never touched him and sometimes you have to be aggressive like that. I'm just happy to have beaten him because it is vitally important for the Championship."
Mika Kallio #36: 7th
"I am happy to have recovered so many places in the final laps but it was a very tough race. I knew that I could keep a good pace right until the end but unfortunately I am not as fast as the rest on new tyres. I just had to hang in there as best I could because I knew I'd be faster when the rest started to have grip problems. I just kept pushing even though I started to lose front and rear grip and I am reasonably satisfied to have fought back to seventh. It is not a fantastic position but not too bad considering I started 15th. I lost some points on Rabat and Aegerter in the Championship but there are many races to go and I am sure I will be more competitive in Brno."
Livio Loi #11: 14th
"It has been a very positive first visit to Indianapolis for me and I'm really happy to have followed up my best ever qualifying result yesterday with my career best finish in the race. I am sure I could have been higher than 14th but on lap six I made a mistake downshifting. I went from third into first gear at Turn 10 and the rear came round on me. It was a big moment and it cost me a lot of time and positions. I just kept pushing as hard as I could to get back into the points and I am pleased I managed to do that and I am very happy with the consistency of my lap times. It is a good way to start the second half of the season but part of me obviously thinks it a top 10 was possible without the mistake, but that can happen when you are pushing at this level."
Michael Bartholemy: Team Principal
"That was an incredible race and I am really happy that Scott has increased his lead in the Championship. It was very important to finish in front of Espargaro for the first time in four races and I think he showed just how much he wants to win this title with some really hard moves. Unfortunately, once again, he was handicapped by the tyres and this is not the first time, so I am hoping to see some improvements coming quickly. It is a shame Scott just couldn't quite get by Nakagami at the end because those extra points could be crucial. But to lead by 26 points means we are more than one race clear again and this is very positive. Mika did an amazing job in the last 10 laps. He was one of the fastest on track at the end and to pass so many riders late on was very important for his position in the Championship. Livio did a very good job on his first visit here and to get his best ever qualifying and race result gives him and his team a good platform to build on for the second half of the season. It is a shame about the downshifting mistake because I think he showed he had the speed to fight for the top 10. He still showed his potential this weekend and I am sure it is only a matter of time before he is getting a first top 10 result under his belt."
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