2008 Le Mans MotoGP Race Report - -War Of Nerves

The three painted lines marking the spot where MotoGP line up on the grid cram a lot of tension into a tiny space. After rolling out of the pits, and round the track for the sighting lap, the riders are in their element doing something they know and understand, riding a powerful motorcycle around a race track. But that release from pre-race tension is all too brief, for it is the prelude to the worst 15 minutes of a rider's life. Once they round the final corner and roll up to their starting position, they are trapped once again inside those few lines of paint, forced to stand idle while the clock ticks away the endless seconds before the race actually starts.

Then, once the bustle of the grid is brought to an end by the 1 minute board, and the bikes head off round the track for the warm up lap, the riders know that things are about to get worse. As they return to the confinement of those three stripes of paint, that sickening feeling in the pit of their stomach intensifies. For though they know they will only be held in that painted prison for a few seconds, restrained by just a red light, they have just long enough to ponder the fact that what they do next is irreversible. No room for error, no second chances, and no quarter given when the flag drops, but until then, motorcycle racers, people who are fundamentally defined by what they do, can do nothing. Just wait. And worry.

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2008 Le Mans Qualifying Practice Report

The second day of MotoGP practice at Le Mans had started in spectacular fashion. At the start of the morning FP3 session, Jorge Lorenzo had a nasty crash, ending up tumbling through the gravel trap at the end of the straight for the Chemin aux Boeufs chicane. A visit to the Clinica Mobile revealed that Lorenzo had been incredibly lucky: the Spanish champion, riding with two fractured ankles and fractured bones in his feet, had not injured himself any further.

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2008 Le Mans Day 1 Report

The first day of free practice took place under cool, overcast but mostly dry conditions, with rain spotting the track only during the final moments of FP2. During both sessions it was Dani Pedrosa who was setting up his stall as the man to beat. Pedrosa was there or thereabouts almost from the moment they rolled onto the track, and it's clear that he means business.

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2008 Le Mans MotoGP Preview - The Shadow Of History

The MotoGP series, especially in the shape of Dorna, the marketing body behind MotoGP, loves to compare itself with Formula One and other four-wheeled racing series, the comparisons always coming out in MotoGP's favor. And it is true that there is usually more passing in a single MotoGP race than there is in a season of Formula One. Dorna is always delighted to point out that if it's excitement you're after, then MotoGP is very much the place to be.

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Future Of The 250 Class To Be Announced On Saturday At Le Mans

Almost since the birth of the Motorcycle Grand Prix championship back in 1949, the 250cc class has operated as the feeder class for the MotoGP championship, especially once the 350cc class was scrapped in 1983. Just about all of the great names of motorcycle racing have come up through the class, from John Surtees, to Mike Hailwood, and from Giacomo Agostini to Valentino Rossi, and far, far too many names to mention in between. This year's crop of rookies coming from 250s underline the quality of riders coming up from the smaller bikes.

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Spies Officially Confirmed As Wildcard Rider For US MotoGP Rounds

Although his participation was never in doubt, Ben Spies wildcard rides at the US rounds of MotoGP have now finally been officially confirmed, according to MCN. Deals in MotoGP are never done until the ink has dried on the paper - and even then, deals can suddenly disappear into thin air - so Spies will be feeling some relief.

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James Toseland Audio Interview On BBC

British rider and double World Superbike rider James Toseland has made a big impression since entering MotoGP. Toseland's 6th place in the MotoGP championship, tied for points with Loris Capirossi, achieved mostly at tracks he'd either never visited or never raced at before, has been a boost in the arm for a number of Superbike riders with aspirations of moving up to MotoGP, as it has disproved the idea that Superbike racing is not a viable route into the MotoGP series.

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