Press releases from the MotoGP teams and Bridgestone after Saturday's Dutch TT at Assen:
Doctors tell Abraham not to start in Assen. Sachsenring also in doubt
Following consultation with medical staff, Karel Abraham will not take part in Saturday’s MotoGP race at Assen in the Netherlands. Before the morning warm-up, the Czech rider underwent a new check-up, which showed that his hand is healing very slowly and that any further strain could make matters worse.
“We tried riding flat out in the warm-up this morning, just to see if the hand would hold up for the entire race. Unfortunately, the pain was quite intense and it would be nearly impossible to ride at full pelt for three-quarters of an hour. Before that, I’d gone for another check-up with the doctors, where they explained that the cause of the pain was the mass bruising of the hand, which would only get worse with any repeated strain. It’s tough, but the only way the hand’s going to get better is with complete rest and rehabilitation. With this in mind, we’ve decided in all likelihood to skip the next race at the Sachsenring in Germany, since the hand is not going to heal in five days and any further strain would put us back to square one. So, I’ll have at least two weeks of rehab, which I hope will be enough time to be fully ready for the next race at Italy’s Mugello circuit. To miss out on Germany is really difficult to take: for Czech fans, it’s the closest race apart from Brno, and I know that there are many fans looking forward to the trip. I’d just like to let them know that I’m really sorry.”
Repsol Honda Team do the double at Assen
Casey Stoner wins and draws level in World Championship with Jorge Lorenzo. Dani Pedrosa joins him on the podium in second place.
The World Championship was blown wide open at the Cathedral of Motorsport on Saturday afternoon, as Casey Stoner and Dani Pedrosa took a Repsol Honda Team podium double in the MotoGP class. The duo dominated the race from start to finish, leaving their rivals behind. Pedrosa led the way on the opening laps, setting a pace that only Casey Stoner managed to keep up with. Stoner took the win after passing the Spaniard ten laps into the race, and had double cause for celebration as he moved level at the top of the overall standings. Rival Jorge Lorenzo was hit by another rider on the first corner and crashed out. Stoner now has three wins this season.
This is the first double of the year for the Repsol Honda Team, making it a Grand Prix to remember for Repsol riders: Maverick Viñales was victorious in Moto3 and Marc Márquez won the Moto2 race earlier on in the day.
POSITIVE DAY FOR SPEED MASTER TEAM AT ASSEN: MATTIA PASINI ENDS THE RACE IN 10TH POSITION
The seventh race of the MotoGP class for the 2012 season was held today at the circuit of Assen.
Pasini obtained his best result so far for 2012 season on top of his ART machine in the GP that ended today. Starting from the fifteenth spot on the grid, Mattia moved up a few placements in the initial phases of the race, staying with the CRT group that was ahead of him. The Italian defended his position with strength, setting a good pace and trying to keep touch with the other riders, once the tyres began to wear out.
The Italian crossed the finishing line in tenth position, third among the CRT machines, obtaining therefore 6 points in the Championship Classification, where he’s currently in fifteenth position.
Mattia Pasini #54 - 10th
“After all, I am happy. We finished in tenth position and, in the whole, this was a positive weekend. We made a step forward, I stayed with the CRT group where Espargaró, De Puniet and Pirro were, even if by half of the race I had some issues. I’m satisfied with the improvements we carried out, the data we put together is important for the next races. Now we’ll look forwards to Sachsenring, hopefully we’ll make some extra progress and we’ll keep working this way"
Stoner and Pedrosa dominate in Assen with another double podium
The legendary Assen circuit was the setting of another brilliant performance by the Repsol Honda Team. The 90,248 spectators occupying the grandstands at the 'Cathedral' enjoyed a two-man battle between Casey Stoner and Dani Pedrosa, who led from start to finish, with no rivals to challenge them.
Casey celebrated his sixth consecutive podium in Assen with another victory, his third of the season, and Dani crossed the line behind him to complete the team's fifth double podium of the 2012 MotoGP World Championship. This result, combined with Jorge Lorenzo's unfortunate crash, places Casey in the joint championship lead with 140 points and Dani, 19 points behind them consolidating third position.
Pedrosa took the race lead from the start, with Casey close behind. They were matching times, lap by lap, separated by mere milliseconds and increased the gap to the rest of the pack by more than eight seconds. Dani set the circuit record on lap fifteen (1'34.548) but couldn't pull away from Casey, who overtook him with nine laps to go and led until the end.
The Repsol Honda Team couldn't ask for a better start to the most demanding period of the season, with three races back to back. Next up is Germany's Sachsenring followed by Italy's Mugello Circuit.
CASEY STONER 1st World Championship Position: 2nd with 140 points
"To take pole position and now the win is really incredible, a big thanks to my whole team who never gave up. My plan was to get a better start than I actually did, take some advantage and use the energy I had to try and make a gap and try to hold on to the end. We also knew that which ever position we were in, we had to preserve the rear tyre. Choosing the softer tyre, there was a big chance that we would destroy it and have nothing left for the end of the race. When I saw Dani was running at a reasonable pace and we were pulling away from the others, I decided to stay there and watch him to save the tyres and my energy as much as I could. With a few laps remaining, I knew we wouldn't suffer a big drop in ty re performance, I still felt good so I decided to pass him and see if I could pull a gap. It was a tough race, I had a lot of arm pump as I had to compensate for my injuries from the crash yesterday, but my fitness was good and the bike was working well in general. I'm sorry for Jorge, nobody wants to take points over a competitor in this manner, but as we can see, one race can change everything".
DANI PEDROSA 2nd World Championship Position: 3rd with 121 points
"Looking at the lap times we did during the weekend, I knew I had better rhythm than Casey, so I made a good start and tried to pull away from the first laps. Casey stayed behind me all the time and by the second half of the race, I believe he took profit of extra energy he saved during the first part of the race to overtake me. Our pace was very good in the race, the bike worked very well but maybe I just chose the wrong strategy this time. At the end of the race, the bike felt heavy with change of direction due to tiredness and it was enough to slow me down from 1'35 to 1'36 for just two laps, and I lost ground, but this is racing. I hope to do a better strategy next week in Germany".
EARLY FINISH FOR BRADL AT ASSEN GP
Assen, 30th June: in sunny conditions the seventh round of the season at Assen circuit saw Stoner conquering the victory followed by his team mate Pedrosa and Dovizioso (third) whilst the premier class rookie Stefan Bradl crashed out on lap two making this the first race he has not finished in his rookie season.
The adjustments made after the first outing on day one, gave Bradl the confidence to improve his pace taking fourth in yesterday qualifying session in only his seventh ever start. Unfortunately the German could not translate his impressive pace into a good result today but he is looking forward to bounce back at his home track in the next weekend.
Bradl: “Well... I do not have so much to say. Yesterday we obtained a very good grid position and today I took another good start. In the first laps the feeling with the bike was great and I could easily close the little gap to Spies. I do not remember last time I has such a good feeling in the first laps but I have to be honest... Probably I was too much aggressive in braking into turn 10 and I crashed. It’s my mistake and I am very sorry for the guys: today we could get a very positive result. Now I want to learn from my mistakes making another step forward ahead my home race. The potential is there and we are capable to race with the top riders”.
Edwards forced to retire at the Assen GP
An electronic problem forced Colin Edwards and the NGM Mobile Forward Racing team to enter the pits during the Dutch TT Assen GP. A complicated weekend and specially Friday’s qualifying session, in which the American rider was not able to take advantage of his potential in the Suter – BMW bike.
The efforts of the team have not been enough in order to solve the problems encountered this week, specially the ones with the traction control. Problems that have not disappeared during the race, forcing the American to enter pits after just a few laps.
Colin Edwards – Retired
“It has been a complicated weekend in many respects. Yesterday’s weather conditions didn’t help at all in finding the pace and at the same time we have found problems with various components of the bike. During today’s race I enter pits because the traction control didn’t work, as it should. It was a shame because the team has worked really hard but we don’t seem to be able to solve these problems. We hope that things will go better in Sachsenring next week.”
Sergio Verbena – Crew Chief
“Through out all weekend Colin did not have a good feeling with the electronics of the bike. Today during the race we had problems with the electronics and especially with the traction control. It was too dangerous to continue the race and he preferred to enter pits and retire. Next week we go to Sachsenring hoping that we will be able to solve the problems we have encountered this week.”
Spies Takes Valiant Fourth at Assen
Yamaha Factory Racing’s Ben Spies took fourth today at the Assen TT in a tough race which again saw him suffer with tyre issues. The Texan made a strong start and was running in third behind Casey Stoner and Dani Pedrosa for the majority of the race. A brief battle saw him hold position over a chasing Andrea Dovizioso and he was beginning to stretch a lead when a serious tyre issue struck. As a result his pace was compromised, allowing Dovizioso to pass and leaving him fourth at the line. The result delivers Spies 13 points to bring his tally to 48 and promotes him one place to 10th in the Championship standings.
Team mate Jorge Lorenzo’s Assen TT was brought to a disastrous end at the first corner. The Championship leader was taken out by an over eager Alvaro Bautista, coming in too hot and taking both himself and Lorenzo out.
Position : 4th Time: +14.775
“Today the bike was good, I struggled with some front grip in the beginning but was able to ride around it. I managed to stay past Dovi and ride at my own pace then about seven or eight laps from the end I was pushing to get away. A chunk came out of the tyre and then a second; I couldn’t do anything about it. I was hoping Dovi would get past me as I was worried the tyre would explode and I didn’t want to fall right in front of him. We’ve made some mistakes early in the year but the last two weekends we’ve had a bike to be on the podium but issues have prevented it. The bike and the team are working so well and I’ve been really comfortable on it so it’s disappointing.”
Position : NC Time:
“Well, today was a complete disaster, Alvaro's move was crazy. I met him after the incident, he apologised and we shook hands but in my opinion this is not enough to justify the accident. When I made a mistake in Japan in 2005 I was penalized with a race. Race Direction told me that he will start from last position on the grid in Sachsenring but this is nothing. We hope that we will be lucky in the future that nothing will happen but if the riders are not penalized properly then they will continue to do crazy things like today. My leg is a big bruise, a big impact but nothing serious happened. Luckily for us we had a 25 point advantage or we would now be far behind. Now we are at zero with Casey so we begin again, the Championship is long so let’s see what happens.”
“A very stupid accident, a too early attack by Bautista resulting in a big mistake. Luckily Jorge is uninjured which is pretty much the only positive thing to take from the race. We lost 25 points so we start at zero again on equal points with Casey. Let’s see how we can change that next week.”
“I think MotoGP riders should be more cautious and know that the race is 26 laps long, not just the first corner. Fortunately Jorge had no serious injury but it has cost him a lot of points. I thought it was going to be a good race for Ben but a technical problem with his tyre compromised his results. It’s definitely not the weekend we forecast but sometimes races are like this. We’re looking now to the next GP to get back what we lost here.”
THE PRAMAC TEAM AND HECTOR BARBERA SCORE A BRILLIANT SEVENTH PLACE AT SUN-KISSED ASSEN
The 26-lap race of the 2012 Iveco TT Assen Grand Prix started under a blue sky and with blazing sunshine that made a decided change from yesterday’s tricky weather conditions.
Hèctor Barberà took a deserved top seven finish at the legendary Circuit van Drenthe this afternoon.
The 25-year-old rider from Valencia made the best start of his 2012 MotoGP campaign and he ended the first lap in sixth place, showing phenomenal early confidence to fight with Valentino Rossi, Nicky Hayden and Cal Crutchlow for most of the race.
For more than two-thirds of the Dutch race, the Spaniard was able to ride his Ducati with strong determination and this great feeling allowed him to maintain an effective race pace, challenging for sixth place.
Unfortunately, on lap twenty-one, during a lively battle unfolding towards a gripping race end and trying to overtake Cal Crutchlow, Hèctor encountered a rear tyre grip issue and he was unable to maintain his consistent pace, finishing in seventh place at the chequered flag.
Hèctor adds 9 points to his championship standing and heads to Germany for the Eni Motorrad Grand Prix next weekend brimming with confidence.
Hèctor Barberà – Pramac Racing Team Rider – 7th place
“I felt great, I had a lot of energy and the confidence with my Ducati was real.
I had a good feeling with the bike from the first laps and I pushed as much as I could to stay with the group composed by Valentino, Nicky and Cal. We had the same race pace and this allowed me to fight with the group.
With five laps to go, I tried to overtake Cal, but I lost the rear grip and from that moment I started to have an issue with the back tyre, losing both my race pace and my confidence. I gritted my teeth until the flag to achieve seventh place and I’m happy and satisfied about the battle with the factory Ducati machines.”
Marco Rigamonti – Pramac Racing Track Engineer –
“With the Qatar GP, today’s race was one of the best rounds of 2012. Hèctor got a brilliant start, staying in the group of riders who had the same race pace and fought for sixth position.
It was a shame about the rear tyre issue. Now we need to check our data, to understand when and why the issue started with the rubber, but we will arrive in Germany with high spirits.”
Battered Ellison In The Points Again
PBMUK rider James Ellison rode through the pain barrier to claim his second successive 14th place MotoGP finish and in doing so added to his World Championship points tally at today's Dutch TT at Assen.
Aboard the Claiming Rules Team (CRT) specification Aprilia ART, the 31-year-old was still suffering the effects of his huge Silverstone warm-up crash two weeks ago and struggled throughout the weekend for the Penrith-based Paul Bird Motorsport team as he couldn't get comfortable on the bike.
Despite improvements made to the machine at Silverstone meaning the team was confident of a good result, Ellison qualified in 19th place out of the 21 riders but it proved to be an uphill struggle for the former World Endurance Champion and double European Superstock Champion in today's 26-lap race.
With a high attrition rate, Ellison found himself in 13th place but following a pit stop for a new tyre, nine times World Champion Valentino Rossi managed to squeeze past James on the very last corner to relegate him to 14th by just 2/1000ths of a second at the chequered flag.
The result sees James hold joint 16th place in the World Championship after seven rounds and sixth placed ART bike. PBMUK are also in joint tenth out of the 14 in the Teams Championship going into next weekend's race at Sachsenring in Germany.
James Ellison: "To sum it up bluntly, it was a bad day at the office. I was in a lot of pain from my Silverstone crash and have been getting treatment and painkillers before and after every session but it just proved too difficult in the race, I pushed so hard every lap but was missing apexes and even ran off the track early in the race which put us last. I worked hard to fight back and the lighter fuel load was helping but it was all too little too late. To top it off Rossi pipped us on the line by 0.002s to take another point. I'm just gutted for the whole team and Aprilia as they worked hard to give me a good bike and I'm sorry that I couldn't capitalise on getting more points. I'll be working hard to get fit for Germany and make up for this weekend."
Phil Borley Technical Director: "It was extremely disappointing that due to his physical condition, James couldn't get the maximum out of the bike as it's the best it's been all season. We were lucky to pick up some points but unlucky that because of getting lapped, he lost out to Valentino Rossi which rubbed salt into the wound. It was an important finish but we need to be much, much closer to the other CRT bikes so hopefully James will be a lot fitter for next weekend."
Podium joy for Dovizioso in Assen
The Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team celebrated another fantastic podium finish in the historic Dutch TT this afternoon after Andrea Dovizioso stormed to third position in front of over 90,000 fans.
The Italian claimed his second podium in the last three races after prevailing at the end of a thrilling fight with American rider Ben Spies on the final lap.
A terrific start from the third row of the grid instantly put Dovizioso into podium contention as he grabbed fourth behind Spies, Casey Stoner and Dani Pedrosa. Dovizioso then piled intense pressure on Spies and he moved into third place on lap eight.
Dovizioso pushed his Monster Yamaha Tech 3 YZR-M1 to the limit but he was unable to streak away from a determined Spies, who seized third back on lap 12. Dovizioso then shadowed Spies for the remainder of the race, waiting until the final lap to pounce with a clinical overtake that secured his second third position of the 2012 World Championship campaign.
Cal Crutchlow produced another heroic performance to finish fifth in the 26-lap encounter, the British rider defying the pain from a broken left ankle he suffered in a practice crash at Silverstone to fight his way through from last position.
The 26-year-old was fortunate to miss a first corner inc ident involving Jorge Lorenzo and Alvaro Bautista, but in taking evasive action to avoid the Spanish duo's collision, he was forced to run off track.
Crutchlow ended the first lap down in 12th but he demonstrated his fighting spirit to catch a battle involving Valentino Rossi, Hector Barbera and Nicky Hayden for fifth after just five laps. Crutchlow's stunning early charge saw him set the third fastest lap of the race on lap four and he had swept into fifth place by lap 16.
Crutchlow's sixth top five finish of the season ensured he remains in fourth place in the World Championship rankings and again he demonstrated the pace that would have certainly put him in the hunt for his maiden MotoGP rostrum had it not been for his unfortunate early off-track excursion.
Andrea Dovizioso 3rd – 76 points:
“Scoring a podium for us feels like a victory and today is another great day for me and the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team. This podium is great because I have never had a very good feeling at this track but with the Yamaha YZR-M1 I felt much more comfortable. I was only seventh on the grid but I knew all weekend my race pace was very fast and I always felt a podium was a realistic goal. I got a good start and it was a beautiful battle with Spies for the whole race. It was a really strong battle and the pace was very high and when I passed Spies for the first time I tried not to abuse the tyres too much because I knew the first two were already too far ahead. I dropped my pace and it really paid off because at the end of the race I was much stronger than him and it seems he apparently had some issue with the rear tyre. I want to say a huge thanks to my crew because onc e again they have done a fantastic job. We work a lot to be competitive for the race and this strategy is really paying off because in the last four races now I have been fighting for the podium. I also want to thank Yamaha for the great support they are offering us. Now I'm really looking forward to the next two races, particularly my home race at Mugello, because after fighting for the podium consistently I am confident that I will be able to repeat this performance another time.”
Cal Crutchlow 5th – 77 points:
“Once again I am contemplating what might have been because without the incident at the first corner I had the pace to be on the podium today. I was actually quite lucky to avoid being collected by Alvaro and Jorge but I still had to run off track and I was last. I'm glad Jorge was not hurt because the job he has done for Yamaha this season has been incredible and he didn't deserve that today. Alvaro was way too fast and I know he didn't do that intentionally but you have to be sensible when braking from high-speed for a tight first corner like that. Like in Silverstone I was right at the back but just decided to get my head down and recover as many places as possible. I had a really good battle with the Ducatis but I had a faster pace, although I had one big moment when I lost the front on lap eight and had to do all the hard work again. To be at the back and still come through to fifth is a fantastic result. But there is no doubt I should have been in the battle with Andrea and Ben. With my ankle still causing me a lot of pain and coming from last to fifth, I can't be too disappointed and I leave here still fourth in the World Championship and that is very important.”
Herve Poncharal – Team Manager:
“We have mixed emotions after that race. On one side we are ecstatic because Andrea is back on the podium again and he rode a fantastic race. His pace was impressive throughout and he definitely deserved to be on the podium. It is not an easy job to fight against the factory bikes in MotoGP and the way he chased down Ben in the last four laps was very exciting. We were just hoping that he had enough time left to pass Ben and his timing was perfect to get third on the last lap. Andrea saved his tyres well and he is really showing his class at the moment. With a bit more luck he might have been on the podium in the last four races, so I am really pleased with the job Andrea is doing for the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team. We are a little bit disappointed though for Cal, even though he rode another phenomenal race. He showed again he had the pace for the podium but he had to run off track at the f irst corner to avoid the incident with Jorge and Alvaro. It is a shame because I have no doubt he would have been in the battle with Andrea and Ben. But he never gives up and that is a great quality of his. He was last like in Silverstone but fought incredibly hard to get back into the top six and he deserves a lot of credit. I am sure it is not going to be long before Cal gets his first podium but to have both of our riders back in the top five is a great achievement. After seven races we are third just 35-points behind the official Yamaha Factory Team in the Team World Championship. That confirms the incredible support we get from Yamaha but also the wonderful job Andrea and Cal are doing.”
PIRRO SECOND OF THE CRTS AT ASSEN, BAUTISTA CRASHES EARLY
Álvaro Bautista played little part in the Dutch TT, but infortunately his seconds of action on track had a big impact. The Team San Carlo Honda Gresini rider lost the front of his bike on the opening corner, lowsiding and taking World Championship leader Jorge Lorenzo out as well. The error was obviously unintentional, and Bautista extends his apologies to the rider and his team. Michele Pirro had a strong race and was close to claiming the honour of best CRT at Assen, although he just missed out on topping the order in the new MotoGP sub-category.
Alvaro Bautista (DNF) “Unfortunately, when I followed Dovizioso’s wheel I lost my braking point and hit the brakes far too late. I tried to slow the bike down, but lost grip on the front and lowsided. I am very disappointed, even more so because I took out Lorenzo in the process and that was the last thing that I wanted to happen. It was my fault that he crashed out and I apologise profusely to him for that. I hope that nothing similar ever happens again. I also apologise to my team, because they worked so hard this week, only to miss out on what could have been a great result due to this mistake.”
Michele Pirro (9th) “It’s a good result, even if I am a little unhappy that lately we are always so close to being the best CRT. The guys are working so hard all the time and the bike improved between yesterday and today. I had the possibility to fight for the top CRT spot and we would have been even more competitive with just a few details adjusted. That’s why I’m convinced that, sooner or later, we will be successful. I thank the team from the bottom of my heart, because whilst I ride the bike, they are making the real difference. I am very happy with them.”
Fausto Gresini “It is a shame about the early crash. Álvaro really didn’t mean it. I am very unhappy, because the crash caught the World Championship leader, Lorenzo, up in it. We are sad that it turned out this way and Álvaro has of course said that it was not intentional. He was trying to gain places but he lost his braking reference and hit the brakes too hard when the tyres were not up to temperature. That meant that he lost grip and that he slid into Lorenzo. Fortunately Michele was able to raise out morale with a good race, although we always seem to be missing a little something to get to the chequered flag as the best CRT. We are growing and are convinced that we will continue to improve, with a victory as soon as possible in this battle our aim for him. I am happy for Michele and the team, as they are working really hard.”
Stoner soars to victory at Assen
Round 7: Dutch TT – Race
Assen, Saturday 30 June 2012
Bridgestone slick compounds available: Front: Soft, Medium. Rear: Medium-Soft, Medium (Asymmetric)
Bridgestone wet tyre compounds available: Soft (Main), Hard (Alternative)
Weather: Dry. Ambient 24-24°C; Track 39-40°C (Bridgestone measurement)
Casey Stoner capped off an impressive weekend for the Repsol Honda team to take his third win of the season ahead of teammate Dani Pedrosa at today’s Dutch TT at Assen.
Stoner made the race-winning move on lap seventeen and continued to push hard to take the checkered flag 4.965 seconds ahead of Pedrosa and the reigning champion now sits level with Yamaha Factory Racing’s Jorge Lorenzo in the championship standings as the luckless Spaniard recorded a DNF after an incident on the first lap. Monster Yamaha Tech 3’s Andrea Dovizioso notched up his second podium of the year with a hard-fought third place, while Randy de Puniet finished in an impressive eighth place to claim CRT honours and close the gap to his Power Electronics Aspar teammate Aleix Espargaro in the standings to just one point.
Track temperatures hit the 40°C mark for today’s race which was more than 20°C warmer than last year’s Dutch TT. Tyre selection for the race was fairly similar to that for qualifying, with all riders selecting the harder front slick option for its greater cornering stability while rear tyre choice was more varied with thirteen of the twenty riders selecting the softer rear slick.
Hiroshi Yamada - Manager, Bridgestone Motorsport Department
“Today’s race was held under sunny skies and the fans that came to the circuit witnessed a fantastic race with many interesting battles throughout the field. Congratulations to Casey and Repsol Honda for a great win in what must have been a tough race. It was unfortunate that Jorge had some bad luck and couldn’t challenge for the win and I am sorry that some riders experienced tyre problems during the race. We are now investigating the issue and will report back to teams with our findings at the next race.
“We now look forward to the next Grand Prix in Germany as a huge crowd is always present at Sachsenring and with a German rider back in MotoGP I expect the atmosphere will be amazing!”
Shinichi Yamashita – General Manager, Bridgestone Motorsport Tyre Development Department
"Today’s Dutch TT saw warm track temperatures and the race was run at a good pace with all riders selecting the harder front slick, while all but seven riders selected the softer slick option for the rear.
“Unfortunately a few riders experienced a problem with their rear tyre today and we sincerely apologise to those riders affected. We have commenced a full investigation into the matter and I will personally take the affected tyres back to Bridgestone’s Technical Centre in Japan tomorrow where they will undergo detailed analysis to determine the cause of this issue.”
Casey Stoner, Repsol Honda – Race Winner
“My plan was to get a better start than I did and use my energy to build a gap at the beginning of the race. When I saw Dani doing a reasonable pace I decided to stay behind him and when there weren’t many laps left the tyre still felt good so I decided to pass him. It was still difficult today but in general the bike was working well and my fitness was good, and in the end it worked out perfectly for us.”
Hayden sixth at Dutch TT, Rossi thwarted by a problem
The Ducati Team experienced an up-and-down weekend at the Assen TT, in the practice sessions and in the race, which was marked by agreeable weather conditions. Nicky Hayden and Valentino Rossi both enjoyed decent starts despite unfavourable grid positions, but both had to overcome problems.
The American suffered a setback when he went off the track at the chicane on lap one, but he quickly re-joined the race and continued to fight in the same group, eventually posting a sixth-place result. His teammate was involved in the same battle, but the Italian was forced to pit with an unusual tyre problem that Bridgestone is investigating. Nonetheless, he demonstrated determination and desire as he returned to the track and fought to a thirteenth-place finish.
Nicky Hayden (Ducati Team) 6th
“I got a pretty good start and stayed out of the mess in turn one, but then I braked too deep in the chicane and went through the gravel. I almost lost the train, but I charged and was able to catch the group again. My bike felt pretty decent, and I got back in front of those guys. I was fighting with Crutchlow and Barbera. After Cal passed, Hector made a big mistake in the chicane and I almost hit him. Valentino and some of the others had tyre problems, but mine hung in there better than some. It would be nice not to have made that mistake on lap one, but I know if I want to go with that group, I’ve got to go at 100 per cent. A couple guys fell down, which helped me to get sixth place, but that’s racing. It hasn’t been an easy weekend, but the guys have really worked hard, and hopefully soon we can really do a good result.”
Valentino Rossi (Ducati Team) 13th
“It’s a shame about today because I started quite well. I was there, having a good race, and I think I could have had a decent result. I was fighting with Nicky, who had passed me, but he was a little bit slower and I was waiting for a good moment to attack him again. I could have finished sixth, which would have given me some points to help in the standings, but we had a big problem with the tyre about eleven laps from the end. I had to return to the garage to change it because it was impossible to continue, so I started again with the soft and finished the race. We’ll try again next week at the Sachsenring.”
Vittoriano Guareschi, Team Manager
“Nicky had a very determined race. He fought and maintained a good rhythm as long as he could, and he managed to recover when he had a small misstep, showing once again that he always gives his all. Valentino did the same. He got a very good start and was there in the same group, but a problem with the rear tyre forced him to pit. He didn’t want to stop, and after the tyre was changed, he returned to the track in order to bring home thirteenth place and three points.”
PETRUCCI FINSHES IN ELEVENT POSITION IN ASSEN
There is the sun and it’s hot in Assen for the last day of Dutch TT. The higher temperature of the track than yesterday gives to the rider some problems of grip and in the tyres choice.
Danilo Petrucci gets a great result finishing the race in 11th position, his best result in MotoGP. The Came Iodaracing Team rider, after a good start, was victim of Lorenzo and Bautista crash and he finished out of the track, rejoining in the last position. Danilo began to push and in few laps he overtook Edwards, Ellison and Silva. He started to fight against the BQR Spanish rider for all the rest of the race untill te last lap when Petrucci overtook Silva at Turn 10 defending the 11th position untill the end in front of Silva, Valentino Rossi and Ellison. Danilo now rises at the 16th place in the champioship standing, 5th best CRT rider, while Iodaracing project with its TR003 gets the 6th place in the Constuctor ranking, 3rd between CRTs.
Simone Corsi finished his race at ten laps to the end for a crash at Turn 10 while he was in 6th position. After a bad start, the Came Iodaracing Team rider after few laps has kept the leading group beginning to fight with Marquez, Redding, De Angelis and Rabat for the podium untill the 15th lap when at the Turn 10 he has lost the front of his FRT and crashed out.
Im Moto3 class Luigi Morciano has finished the race in 28th position. The Ioda team Italia rider has done a good race where he got in the first part the same lap times of the top riders. Jonas Folger was forced to retire for a crash during the fourth lap.
"I’m very happy because I’ve got my best result in MotoGP class – Petrucci declared – and I’m back at points after three difficult race. I did a good start but for the Lorenzo and bautista crash the other riders pushed me out of the track and I rejoined in last position, so I had to force the pace and I’ve got some positions but I’ve lost too much time from Pasini and I haven’t got my target that was the tenth position. My TR003 in these day was better and better, my team did a great job enabling me to get this good result”.
"Unfortunately this crash has ruined a good race – Corsi said – because I was fighting for the podium when I’ve lost the front of my FTR. We are growing and we are still competive and now we will continue to work in this way for the next race in Germany”.
"I’m very happy because in these days we have got many good result – Morciano declared – during the race I did many good laps and this in good for the next two race”.
"Volevo rifarmi in gara dopo le difficoltà delle prove – ha detto Folger – ma al quarto giro ho perso l’anteriore ed ho dato una gran botta. Fortunatamente non mi sono fatto nulla di grave e cercherò di rifarmi la settimana prossima davanti ai miei tifosi”.
"I try to push hard trying to do a good race after many problems – Folger said – but during the fourth lap the front of my TR002 close and I crashed out. I hope to do a good race next week in Germany in front of my fans”.
SUPERB RANDY DE PUNIET BREAKS INTO TOP TEN WITH A CRT
POWER ELECTRONICS Aspar rider places eighth with new type of MotoGP machine. Teammate Aleix Espargaró suffers mechanical breakdown in midst of fight to be best CRT rider
A chaotic start to the Dutch TT had a big effect on the MotoGP class, as on the opening corner Alvaro Bautista bowled series leader Jorge Lorenzo out of the race. That left Dani Pedrosa and Casey Stoner out in front without their main rival amongst them, and the duo quickly broke free. First across the line at the end of the race was reigning World Champion Stoner, who got past Pedrosa midway through the contest and took the win. Third place went to Andrea Dovizioso.
Today was an important day for the MotoGP World Championship. For the first time, one of the new bikes brought in by the CRT concept featured in the top ten places. The rider taking said bike across the line was POWER ELECTRONICS Aspar's Randy De Puniet, who was able to reclaim some of the points lost in various setbacks earlier on in the season. The Frenchman did a magnificent job to take eighth place, eight points and a place in history.
Teammate Aleix Espargaró would also have been part of the milestone top ten, where it not for a problem with his engine. The POWER ELECTRONICS Aspar rider still holds the lead of the CRT class standings, but was forced to retire from today's race with an engine failure on lap fourteen. That meant that he was out of the points for the first time in 2012.
8th Randy De Puniet: "I am very proud of this result. It shows that when the team works hard, we can reap the rewards. I had a great race today and had some of the good luck that I had been lacking in other races this season. Now the standings for best CRT rider are practically level. Eighth place with a CRT team is a turning point for the championship. Points in this class are hard to get, so to get eight in one go makes me very happy. The team did a great job and even made some further adjustments in the warmup that worked well. We tried to conserve the tyres from the start of the race and they were still reliable at the end. It wasn't an easy race and there was first a tough fight with my teammate and later with Michele Pirro. The start of the season was not simple for us and we have had some bad luck, so this result makes me very happy."
Aleix Espargaró (DNF): "We had performed very well in practice. I knew that in the second half of the race I would be feeling more comfortable than my rivals, and that's how it turned out. It was hard to move the bike around with a full tank, but after that I felt very comfortable. That makes it such a pity that in the final third of the race the engine failed and I had to retire. I had been having a great fight with Randy and I think that we could have got a good result together for the team, where it not for this misfortune. It leaves a bad taste in my mouth but these things happen. We've lost points but I shouldn't worry, because we are working very well and I'm sure that we will be back at the front in Germany."