Results and summary of the MotoGP race at Laguna Seca:
Casey Stoner has taken a convincing victory at Laguna Seca, holding back through the first part of the race before making a charge to pass teammate Dani Pedrosa and early leader Jorge Lorenzo and going on to take the win. The win sees Stoner extend his championship lead to 20 points again going into the summer break.
After qualifying at Laguna Seca, there should be few doubts left over who is the favorite for the race on Sunday. Jorge Lorenzo left pit lane and proceeded to put down such a scorching pace - a 1'21.9 on just his second full lap - that left the rest breathless and unable to match him. Lorenzo then blasted out a huge string of high 1'21s - race pace, according to Ben Spies - before pitting and going on to set pole. As Spies put it to reporters, "Everybody's scratching their heads over Jorge's race pace. Casey got down there for one lap, but Jorge did five of those in a row."
Press releases from the MotoGP teams after free practice and qualifying at Laguna Seca:
Unfortunate End to Free Practice for Lorenzo
This morning's final free practice of the 2011 Grand Prix of U.S.A ended abruptly for Yamaha Factory Racing rider Jorge Lorenzo. The reigning world Champion had pulled up for a practice start midway round the track, having accelerated away into a left hand corner he suffered a huge high side. A subsequent check from the medical centre has cleared him as fit and approved to race.
Results of qualifying practice for MotoGP at Laguna Seca:
Casey Stoner has topped the final session of free practice at Laguna Seca, but he has Repsol Honda teammate Dani Pedrosa and factory Yamaha's Jorge Lorenzo hot on his heels. Less than five hundredths of a second separate Stoner from 3rd place man Lorenzo, with Pedrosa 0.017 behind the Australian. Stoner's lap was set early in the session, but Lorenzo's pace was most impressive of all, the Spaniard posting 10 laps in the 1'21s, more than either Stoner or Pedrosa could manage.
Friday brought typical Monterrey Peninsula weather to Laguna Seca: cool and overcast in the morning, with temperatures rising and the sun out in the afternoon, but surprisingly, the times did not really tumble during the second session of practice. The difference between the fastest time in each of the two sessions was just a quarter of a second, despite a much warmer track.
A bumper crop of press releases from the MotoGP teams at Laguna Seca. Because of European newspaper deadlines, some teams issued two press releases, one after FP1 and another at the end of the day. Below are the press releases:
Good start for the Repsol Honda Team in Laguna Seca
The Repsol Honda Team enjoyed a strong start in the Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix today in Monterey, California.
Casey Stoner has topped the first session of free practice at Laguna Seca, getting up to speed early and setting a steady pace around the 1'22.3 bracket. Stoner's Repsol Honda teammate Dani Pedrosa ended in 2nd, and just a tenth of a second slower than Stoner, despite a low-speed tip over after running on at the Andretti Hairpin. Pedrosa just edged ahead of Jorge Lorenzo, the Yamaha rider twelve hundredths behind the Australian.