Press releases from the MotoGP teams and Bridgestone after a fascinating and thrilling race at Aragon:
Movistar Yamaha Magic Continues as Lorenzo Masters Aragon
Motorland Aragón (Spain), 28th September 2014
Today’s Gran Premio Movistar de Aragón proved to be the most dramatic of the season so far as Movistar Yamaha MotoGP rider Jorge Lorenzo defied both his rivals and the changing weather to deliver a master class in Grand Prix riding and claim his first victory of the season.
Teammate Valentino Rossi’s Aragón fortunes were the mirror opposite, the Italian crashing out in the early laps.
With a dry start to the race, Lorenzo was one of the few to opt for the soft front medium rear tyre combination and made a jump of three places to fourth in the opening corners. Third was to follow quickly and then a promotion to second as front runner Andrea Iannone became one of the first of many to crash out.
Lorenzo tucked in behind race leader Marc Marquez, beginning the Spanish duel that race fans had been waiting for. Never more than half a second apart, it wasn’t until there were just 15 laps remaining that Lorenzo made his move through the uphill section of the circuit for the lead. Three laps later Marquez was back through, passing into turn one.
One lap later and the weather became another rival to face on track as the white flag was waved. With some drops of rain falling riders were now clear to change to wet bikes if wanted. The lead group stayed out and with 9 laps remaining Lorenzo mirrored Marquez’ earlier pass, re-taking the lead into turn one.
A lap later and with the track getting damper in places, Lorenzo slowed and both Marquez and Dani Pedrosa passed in the uphill series of corners. With rain now clearly evident the front three played a dangerous gamble, not wanting to allow the others to get away by pitting. With four laps to go Lorenzo made his move, diving in to change for his wet bike and returning immediately to the track. In the meantime, Pedrosa had crashed out in the start straight, promoting Lorenzo to second.
Race leader Marquez opted not to pit and a lap later also fell victim to the wet, crashing out and leaving Lorenzo with a clear run to the finish line and his first victory of the season.
Teammate Rossi had started well from his sixth place grid position and had been making progress when he ran wide in the down hill section, running off track and onto the slippery grass where he crashed heavily. He lost consciousness briefly after the crash but regained it quickly and was taken immediately to the medical centre for a check up. There appears to be no injuries however he has now transferred to hospital for a precautionary check up.
Lorenzo’s superb race craft delivers the maximum 25 points. He remains in fourth position, now just 12 points behind his teammate in third. Rossi’s DNF means he stays on 214 points, now three behind Pedrosa in second.
99 Jorge Lorenzo
1st / 44'20.406 / 23 laps
“It's been a very crazy race, because we won at a track where we’ve never won and we’ve had a lot of problems all weekend. I made a really good start, my first lap was very good and I kept at the wheel of Marc. The bike was working very well and Marc was a little bit slower than in practice so I could stay with him and I passed him one or two times. The problem was it was spitting, so I didn't have much confidence, I was very careful and the others were going away in front. Andrea was catching me and I thought I was going to be fighting for third or fourth position. But finally I had an intuition; every lap I felt the spotting was coming worse and it was very dangerous and easy to crash. When I saw Marc and Dani keeping on racing and without going into the pits in the last corner, I said ok, I will take a risk and enter. I changed the bike, the new tyres were very difficult to warm up, not so much grip but I tried to be very focused and not make many mistakes. When I passed the board on the straight I was in fourth position so I thought we are going to finish very far but then the next lap I was first! I was surprised; I didn't expect to be first. Having this victory is a great relief for me after so many months of challenges and fights so I’m very proud.”
“This was an impressive race, Jorge made no mistakes. He took the right decision at the right moment to change the bike and he chose the right tyre for the dry also at the start of the race. All in all he made a perfect race and took a well-deserved victory. His decisions were very well made. Vale was riding very well up to his crash, it’s a pity because after his out lap he said the changes we made were perfect and he felt the bike was working well. We are not clear yet on the cause of the crash but he was clearly riding with potential to finish on the podium. Fortunately he seems to be fine and has been taken to the hospital as a precautionary check up following an initial check at the medical centre. I need to thank the team who worked hard from Friday where we were struggling to find solutions to bring us to a highly competitive level today.”
Clinica Mobile Medical Director
“Valentino suffered a concussion with a suspected loss of consciousness. From a neurological point of view he has recovered very well. He was taken to hospital in Alcaniz to make a further check, in particular a CT scan of the skull that has ruled out any bleeding in the brain. As a precaution he will be observed in the coming hours, but there are no special reasons for concern.”
The above medical bulletin about Valentino's conditions follows the CT scan the Movistar Yamaha MotoGP rider underwent this afternoon at the Alcaniz hospital. His physical conditions will be checked again by Clinica Mobile later today. Further updates will follow soon.
Rain in Spain causes end of race mayhem in Aragón
Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez and Dani Pedrosa today fell victim to problematic weather, crashing in the final laps of the Aragón GP, as Jorge Lorenzo took his maiden win of 2014.
The Spanish duo, who started the race in prime positions – Marc 1st and Dani 2nd – dropped positions in the first lap, Marc crossing the line in 2nd and Dani in 4th. After a brief battle with Andrea Iannone, Marc passed into 1st and a few corners later Andrea crashed, promoting Jorge Lorenzo to 2nd and Dani to 3rd. Jorge took the lead from Marc on lap nine for a few laps before Marc again passed for the lead at turn one on lap twelve, as the white flag was displayed by track marshals, signifying that riders may now swap bikes if necessary.
Marc and Jorge then battled for a few laps, trading the race lead, when the rain flag was shown on the start / finish straight at the beginning of lap sixteen. Dani passed Jorge and proceeded to duel with Marc as other riders began to enter the pits to change bikes, for the wet setup and tyres. The rain was almost non-existent at the back of the circuit, but quite intense on the front straight, and with just four laps remaining both Marc and Dani made the choice to stay out. Dani made a small mistake in turn one and crashed out, then unfortunately on the next lap Marc also crashed. Both riders were able to get back to the pit lane and change the bike, but with two laps remaining it was too late. Marc finished 13th and Dani 14th.
Marc (292) still leads the Championship by 75 points over Dani (217), who is 3 points ahead of Valentino Rossi (214) – who crashed out on lap four – and Lorenzo (202) has closed the gap considerably after his race win. Now the Championship will head East in two weeks time for the three back-to-back races of Japan, Australia and Malaysia.
13th - Championship Standing: 1st - 292 points
“Today's race was difficult because I, like many other riders in MotoGP, had never experienced track conditions like this before. It was a shame that it started to rain; if it hadn't, then I think that Dani, Jorge and I would have made the end of the race really exciting for the fans. I think that we did a good job all weekend - it was just a pity about the crash. I tried to hold on because there were only a few laps remaining, but today I learned that in these situations it is better to use a different strategy.”
14th - Championship Standing: 2nd - 217 points
“It was a difficult race in extreme conditions, but we were able to ride a good first part and were in contention for the win. I made the wrong decision about when to come in to change bikes and didn't make the switch on the lap that I should have. My tyres couldn't hold out any longer and I crashed. Luckily I was able to remount and pick up two points from this race. It is a little disappointing to have gone so far and not taken a good result, but these experiences are useful for learning and heading to the next race stronger.”
Crutchlow scores his first podium of the season with third place for the Ducati Team in the GP of Aragón. Dovizioso crashes and has to retire from fourth
Cal Crutchlow today scored his first podium of the season in the GP of Aragón, round 14 of the 2014 MotoGP World Championship. The Ducati Team’s British rider took the chequered flag in third place, just a fraction behind runner-up Aleix Espargarò, in the pouring rain.
Team-mate Andrea Dovizioso was not so fortunate, the Italian crashing out on lap 19 when rain started to fall heavily at the MotorLand circuit. At the time Dovi was lying in fourth place behind Pedrosa, Marquez and Lorenzo.
The GP of Aragon produced a number of surprises due to the rain, which began to fall half-way through the 23-lap race, first lightly then increasing in intensity during the final stages.
Crutchlow, who started from row 2, concluded the first lap in eighth place and was then involved in a scrap with A. Espargaro and Bautista. The Coventry man decided to pit to change bikes on lap 18, and he moved up to third. On the final lap Cal managed to catch Aleix Espargarò and tried to pass him coming out of the final curve, but he flashed across the line just 17/1000ths of a second away from the Spanish rider, finishing the race in third place.
Dovizioso, who started from row 3 of the grid, moved into fourth on lap 8 after a scrap with Pol Espargaro. Despite the falling rain, the Italian stayed out on the track and was able to make up ground on the three Spanish riders ahead of him, but on lap 19 he lost control of his Desmosedici GP14 at turn 9 in a highside and had to retire.
Cal Crutchlow (Ducati Team #35) – 3rd
“Obviously we got very lucky with the conditions, but it was the same for everyone so I don’t really care! I am pleased with the work that the guys have done, we are in better shape than what we were, even in the dry. A great job by Ducati, they haven’t given up with me and I haven’t given up with them and I think that shows week in and week out, even when the results haven’t been good. I got a wheelie coming out of the last corner because I hit the white paint, and I probably would have got Aleix on the line for second if I had been able to change gear in time!”
Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team #04) – DNF
“Everything was going well while the track stayed dry and I was in fourth place. When it began to rain I started to make up ground on the leaders. Unfortunately I made a mistake at turn 9: it was difficult to see where the track was wet and I lost the rear of my GP14 in a high-side. It’s a pity, because I was close to Lorenzo and at the end of that lap I was going to come in and switch bikes. I even think I could have fought it out for the win with him, seeing the way things turned out. It was a situation we should have taken advantage of because today a lot of riders made mistakes. Luckily I only bruised my buttock, not my pelvis: it hurts a bit but it’s nothing serious.”
Luigi Dall’Igna (Ducati Corse General Manager)
“We are really happy with Cal’s podium, because up to now he’s had a difficult season despite his and the entire team’s commitment. He really deserved that result! It’s a pity about Andrea’s crash, he was running a good race and could probably have got a podium as well. For us this Aragón weekend was important mainly because it confirmed that our bike is becoming more and more competitive. In every session the GP14 was always up amongst the top positions, and this gives us confidence that our work is going in the right direction.”
Wet weather fails to dampen Smith’s blaze to 5th
Monster Yamaha Tech3 rider Bradley Smith rode a superbly executed race whilst battling the challenging wet conditions to brilliantly land 5th position at the Motorland Aragon circuit today. The British star began the race which was initially dry, from 11th on the grid as he looked to surge through the field straight away and make a charge for the leading bikes. However Smith had to undertake evasive action to avoid colliding with another rider which caused him to slip down to 20th at the end of the first lap. Yet, the 23 year old rider composed himself and rapidly made amends as he reached 11th by lap 5 after firmly setting into a solid and consistent race pace. With 14 laps to go, Smith was running in tenth and closing down the riders in front before breezing past Stefan Bradl and Alvaro Bautista to seize 8th as the rain began to fall. On lap 18 he made the decision to enter the pits to swap to his bike with the wet setup and then climbed back up to 7th on the 20th lap. Following this, the British rider proceeded to overthrow his teammate on lap 22 to clinch 5th and brilliantly stormed to the chequered flag in this position to equal his best finish in MotoGP. In addition, Smith overtook a colossal fifteen riders from the end of the first lap in what was an impressive showing of pure determination aboard the Yamaha YZR-M1.
On the other side of the Monster Yamaha Tech3 garage, Pol Espargaro persevered through the difficult weather conditions to finish right behind his teammate in 6th position. The young Spanish rider who ran strongly all weekend continued his hot streak of form in the 23 lap race which he began from the head of the second row in 4th. He bolted forward and completed the opening lap in 5th position as he ran right behind the factory MotoGP riders. The Spaniard remained focused and by the third lap he was running in 4th as he became locked into a battle with Andrea Dovizioso. The rookie unfortunately ran wide during the 8th lap and was moved back to 7th as he fought the challenging circuit but showed complete resolve to move back up to 5th by the lap 12. With four laps remaining as the rain was falling stronger, Espargaro swapped to his wet bike to then reclaim 5th shortly after pitting. As the end got closer he held off Alvaro Bautista to finish 6th at the chequered flag in what was another strong performance for the premier class rookie.
Race : 5th Championship : 10th Points : 85
"It was a great result today and I accomplished my ambition of getting into the top five although the conditions may have helped me in achieving this. It was a tough race and I could have finished even higher still had I not dropped back to 20th on the first lap. I tried to take some aggressive passes at the beginning and actually hit the back of someone, who I think was Valentino at turn 5, which sat me up. I then had a speed wobble coming over the sweeping left uphill corner and I was going to possibly clip another rider in front but ended up 20th. I made the decision to pit at the same time as Cal, so I think a podium could have been possible for me, but I must say congratulations to him for the result. As for me, I am pleased to get 5th and I’ve got to say thank you to the team for the work they have done this weekend. Now I look forward to the upcoming flyaway races where I will once again be doing my best to get into the top six."
Race : 6th Championship : 7th Points : 108
"I really can't hide how disappointed I am as it is the 3rd time this year that we have been incredibly unlucky with the weather conditions. In Assen we were fast for the entire weekend and sitting right on the starting grid when the rain arrived and then the same happened two weeks later in Germany. Here we at least managed to show a strong first half of the race, but unfortunately I made a mistake and while I was catching up on Andrea to regain 4th position it started to rain again. I decided to copy the strategy of the more experienced riders in front of me but that clearly wasn’t the right choice as we lost a lot of time. It's truly frustrating, as with just a few more dry minutes we would have ended the weekend in a completely different manner. However, that's racing and we will try again in Japan in a couple of weeks of time."
Hervé Poncharal - Team manager :
"To have both riders finish 5th and 6th equals our best team result so far this year so we obviously have to be satisfied. When I had a look at the weather forecast yesterday I was a bit worried about what could occur today but both riders did a great job which should fill them with confidence for the next races. However, there is a slight bitter taste in our mouths as we missed a great opportunity for podiums when you see how some of the other riders capitalised on the weather. We were just a bit too late. Bradley pitted one lap earlier which was better than Pol, but he was still quite far behind due to his mistake at the beginning which was a big shame as his pace on the dry tyres when it was just starting to rain was very good. Pol was on course for a podium but considering that he is in his rookie year, it is understandable that he chose to follow the old hands in front of him, but for sure he learnt a lot for the future. Still, 5th and 6th is a strong set of results even though we could have possibly been higher, but now we head to Japan where we hope to repeat this positive result. In addition, I must congratulate Jorge on the wise decisions he made during the race to secure his first victory this season."
BAUTISTA BATTLES HARD TO SEIZE SEVENTH IN ARAGON FLAG TO FLAG. REDDING TENTH
Team GO&FUN Honda Gresini rider Alvaro Bautista took a hard fought seventh place in today’s Grand Prix of Aragon, battling with determination both in the first part of the race, held on dry asphalt, and also after the arrival of the rain and the consequent change of the bike in the pit lane as per 'flag to flag' regulation.
In trouble during practice and qualifying, Bautista just missed the top five today, crossing the finish line less than 0.3 seconds behind Bradley Smith and Pol Espargarò’s Yamahas, despite a vibration problem with the brakes that slowed him down after he climbed on the second bike for wet conditions.
His teammate, Scott Redding, got a good tenth place, picking up important points for the championship: the English rookie crossed the finish line behind the other two Honda RCV1000R of Hiroshi Aoyama and Nicky Hayden, but nevertheless he managed well his first 'flag to flag' with a transition from the dry to the wet.
ALVARO BAUTISTA (7th)
“Today we faced an unpredictable race: this morning we didn’t know in what conditions we were going to race, then the track dried out and so we started with a dry setting. To be honest I was feeling quite comfortable; there was more grip on the track, even though I felt exactly the same problems we had during practice. I fought for the fifth position in the second group of riders, then it started to rain so I continued cautiously, until it became necessary to change the bike when the rain intensified. Unfortunately when I rejoined the track on the second bike for wet conditions I had a vibration problem with the brakes that forced me to go wide in a corner: it’s a shame, because in the end I was very close to the fifth position and if there was another lap, or even just a few corners more, I think I could overtake Smith and Pol Espargarò”.
SCOTT REDDING (10th)
“In the beginning I felt quite comfortable, but then I started to spin a lot and when the rain came I had no edge grip on corner entry, so I lost a lot of time there. In addition, for me it was the first time to go from dry to wet; I went from wet to dry a few times, but going from riding with the slicks to riding with rain tyres is quite different, and also knowing the right time to change the bike. Anyway, my timing was not too bad, maybe I could come in just one lap before. I’m not really disappointed but I’n not really happy, because I’ve been the first Open Class Honda for first part of the race and I was feeling good before the rain, which we didn’t plan… Anyway, after these two last races I’m confident we can bounce back soon”.
“Bautista was keeping a good pace in the dry, then the arrival of rain changed everything: when he got on the second bike for wet conditions, unfortunately Alvaro was slowed down by a vibration on the brakes, losing some ground. Later the situation has improved, but there were only a few laps to the end of the race and it was not possible to reach a better position. Scott did a decent race, even if we were not able to hit our target, which was to be the top Open Class Honda”.
BRADL TAKES IMPORTANT 4th PLACE AT DRAMATIC ARAGÓN GP
Aragón, 28 September: today’s 23-lap race in Aragón was one of the most breath-taking rounds of the season with many riders crashing out due to the tricky conditions (including the championship leader Marc Marquez). The MotoGP field had to deal with fog, rain and colder temperature after two days of sunny practice sessions. Starting from the third row on the grid, LCR Honda racer Stefan Bradl had realistic podium aspirations but the challenge in these conditions was complicated for everybody especially with heavy rain at the final part of the race. Bradl ended the fourteenth round with a very positive 4th place which gives him more confidence before the over-sea back to back races.
Stefan: “Well…it was a crazy race for us. Firstly we have lost some positions at the start because our clutch was not working well. Then I was on hard rear tyre whilst the others were on soft except Marc and Dani. With the mist I had not enough confidence to lean because I was loosing the rear on entry so I dropped back some positions. Then it started to rain more and more and I thought to go in one lap earlier but I had many things in my head at that moment. The pit-stop was simply perfect so we could gain some position s when we changed the bike. After that the podium was very close but I missed the final boost to go for it. Anyway in the past we had difficult races so this 4th place is very important for us especially before the over-sea races. Must thank my Team because they made an excellent job in these tricky conditions”.
Superb second place for Espargaro at Aragon
NGM Forward Racing rider Aleix Espargaro claimed his first podium finish this season in front of his home crowd at Aragon Grand Prix and his first ever podium in career in the MotoGP class.
Aleix Espargaro made a perfect race in difficult race conditions, bringing his Forward Yamaha in second position. The Spaniard will be remembered as the first rider on the MotoGP podium with an Open bike. Aleix was very good at staying calm when Smith touched him at turn 3 at the beginning of the race, obliging him to go wide and recovering, lap after lap, from the back to the sixth position. Started with slick tyres, Aleix managed perfectly the race when it started to rain. With 7 laps to go, he was the first to decide to enter the pits to change bike. He did it one lap before all the other riders and this was the key of the success of this incredible race that saw him second at the finish line behind Jorge Lorenzo and in front of Cal Crutchlow.
It was a very good race also for team mate Alex De Angelis, who finished in 12th position, earning important points for the championship. After two days of practices on dry conditions, Alex adapted quickly to the wet conditions in the warm up. With the race declared dry, Alex took the start with the slick tyres and he then entered the pits to change bike. Strong of this result, Alex looks very confident for the Japan GP in two weeks time.
With todays’ result, Aleix Espargaro is 6th in the world championship with 112 points.
“It’s a special day for me and for the team. This is the first podium in the MotoGP class for NGM Forward Racing, for Aleix and for an open bike. It’s an extraordinary feeling and it’s great to share it with all the guys of the team that have worked hard throughout the season to get this result. I want to thank Aleix for his determination and for the perfect race strategy. A special thanks goes to Yamaha for their support. Once again, thanks Aleix and a special thank to every single person that work for the team in the office and on track with commitment and professionalism”.
“It’s my first podium in MotoGP and this is an incredible feeling. We have worked hard throughout the season to get this result and I want to thank the NGM Forward Racing Team and my family that has always supported me. It was a difficult race, made more complicated by Smith who touched me at the beginning of the race, obliging me to recover from the 19th position. When I was 6th, with 7 laps to go, I took the risk to be the first rider to enter the pits to change bike, as it was raining a lot. It was a perfect strategy. In the last lap I heard Cal catching me, he touched me on the straight but I could defend my second position. It’s an extraordinary result and I’m going to party till Japan GP!”
Alex De Angelis
“It was a difficult race but very positive. This is my third race in MotoGP this year and I had to face different situations for the first time. Today we started with dry conditions but it started to rain and it was increasing lap after lap. I had to enter the pits to change the bike and this was the first time for me in race conditions. It was a bit of mess, but all in all I’m very satisfied. I could fight with the open bikes and we improved. This was our target and we met it. I’d like to congratulate Aleix and his team for his great second place”.
DRIVE M7 Aspar riders fight against the odds to secure great results
Hiroshi Aoyama, eighth, with his best result of the year and Nicky Hayden ninth, riding at a high level in return race
A wet track initially, then wet-drying and wet again, as the MotoGP riders had to deal with the elements in a colorful race at Motorland Aragon. The track remained slightly damp when the race got underway at 2pm. Iannone took the lead, but Marquez showed he had more pace and intended to dominate. Meanwhile, the drastic drop in temperatures meant that the Yamaha riders stepped up today to match the performance of the Hondas and both Lorenzo and Rossi, despite getting caught up on the grid, were soon up there with the leaders. Iannone went down and then Rossi too. Lorenzo tangled with Marquez in the first half of the race, with Pedrosa riding patiently behind. The white flags came out, highlighting what was about to come, the perfect storm. In the last ten laps the rain caused havoc at Motorland. The more conservative riders changed their bikes quickly, but Marquez and Pedrosa decided to take more risks unnecessarily and crashed on slicks as the rain got heavier. Both Pedrosa and Marquez rejoined the race to finish in the points, while Lorenzo, the last of the ‘title contenders’ to win this year, crossed the finish line in first position. Behind him Espargarò and Crutchlow completed the podium.
If you had said to Nicky Hayden he would finish ninth on his return after two months out he would not have believed it. Apart from experience, one of the greatest strengths of DRIVE M7 Aspar rider is his response in adversity. The weekend at Aragon had been one of constant evolution, without discomfort in his wrist, the most important factor. Today the Kentucky rider managed to start with determination and play his cards masterfully, changing the bike just in time (17th lap) and pushing to the end to achieve ninth, his second best result of the year after his eighth achieved in Qatar. On the other side of the DRIVE M7 Aspar box, Hiroshi Aoyama also used his experience to survive in the hectic conditions. With the arrival of the rain, the Japanese rider went into the garage a lap after his teammate and also showed his best on the wet asphalt. He finished eighth, his best result of the season, a reward for the bravery shown during the 23 laps of Motorland.
Nicky Hayden 9th: "Today's race, with changing conditions, was quite hard. Even early on the track we were sliding and after ten laps the rain started getting stronger. This circuit is quite long, has many ups and downs and some blind corners, even on the straights the visibility was limited, it was difficult to find the braking markers. Still we managed a fairly positive result, but we must also consider that many riders crashed. We lost some positions when it started to rain and with the change of bike. We managed to finish the race, when three months ago I had to stop competing and I had to rebuild my wrist, so ninth position is great for us. I am happy to be back racing and competitive again. I hope to recover more, to race better in Motegi. I want to thank the team for all the work they have done for me."
Hiroshi Aoyama 8th: "Today we had a difficult race at Motorland. We opted for the harder tyre and at first we suffered, hoping to maintain a steady pace in the early laps but it proved difficult. But we were able to cope and stay in the group, and as the laps went by I started to have more grip and gain positions. I had a good feeling and I fought with Hernandez and Redding. Then it started to rain and I had doubts about the best time to change bikes. I've tried to stay as long as possible on slicks. After changing the bike, the sensation in the wet was also good and I was able to keep my position. I am very happy to have finished eighth in Spain, in a very important race for my team. The team worked perfectly all weekend and we have been competitive in each session. Now I go into the race in Japan at home with high expectations."
Hernandez and Iannone betrayed by the rain
After Assen and Sachsenring the race at Aragon was characterized by the rain and absolute uncertainty too. Andrea Iannone was one of the first victims of the many crashes that occurred in this event. Yonny Hernandez suffered from the start of the rain that came down during the last few laps and finished in fifteenth place.
Short but intense race for Andrea Iannone. At Aragon the Italian rider made a perfect start that allowed him to fight with Marc Marquez for the lead throughout the first lap. Unfortunately on the second lap Andrea went a little wide and putting his rear tire on the slippery synthetic grass, in fact after the rain in the morning it was still wet, being a threat for all the riders. For him it was impossible to control the bike that literally shot him to the ground. Andrea was unharmed but regretted the incident that stopped him from being the protagonist in a grand prix that started on the right way. Andrea will try again in the Asian races.
Yonny Hernandez started well, staying immediately behind the top ten, trying to gain then position. At about eight laps from the end the rain started falling, Yonny crashed fortunately without any consequences but losing a lot of time. While changing motorcycle the rain became more insistent but the crash had made him move back to fifteenth place. He is happy that he finished in the point and hopes to do better in the next races.
Andrea Iannone (Pramac Racing)
"I started well, I battled with Marc and I felt comfortable with my bike. Then unfortunately I crashed. I'm sorry for what happened because I could have fought for the podium. I took the same line as Marc but coming out of the corner, I was a bit wider out of the curb where there is synthetic grass it. I was about to crash because of a high-side but I managed to get the bike under control. But after that I was on the grass at a very high speed without being able to use the brakes and I crashed. It was a difficult situation. Now I want to think about the next race hoping to repeat or improve the result of qualifying and then close the weekend in beauty. "
Yonny Hernandez (EnergyT.I. Pramac Racing)
"I am very disappointed with my race because I threw away the chance to get back into the top ten. I quickly found a good rhythm, then when it started to rain, I decided to return to the pit lain but the last corner I crashed. when I got back on the bike made anther lap throwing away precious time. I can say I learned a lesson so next time I will not make these mistakes. Let's hope fora good race in Motegi. "
Bad luck in Aragon: his bike betrayed
Immediately after the start, the race at Aragon ended for Czech rider Karel Abraham. He had to retired from the race due to technical defect on the bike. The race was dramatized by the rain and for the first time in the session won Jorge Lorenzo
“Bad luck at all. The bike slowed down, so I decided to leave the track. Then I tried to turn the engine off and start it again, but it didn´t work. We don´t know yet what happened, guys are still working on it. I´m pretty annoyed. This was the race where open bikes can fight with prototypes. Aleix Espargaro finished second, Aoyama running the same bike as mine finished eighth. This could be our chance for the season´s best and we missed it.”
, Cardion AB chief mechanic
“We are really really unlucky. This was the worst time to suffer bike failure. Karel started perfectly and he got 12th position. Following the result we can say, that we made very good tyre choice and we would finish around 8th position if nothing happened. But it did. We can´t say what exactly happened. We took a look on the engine and it seems ok. The question is if the failure is mechanical or electronic. Now we are sending all the parts to Japan to let Honda engineers work on it and say what happened.”
Top ten for Redding in flag-to-flag Aragón race
Aragón, Spain – 28 September 2014: Scott Redding picked up important championship points with tenth place in today’s weather affected Grand Prix of Aragón.
The weather played a big part in proceedings today, with the 23-lap MotoGP race starting in the dry and finishing in the wet, after warm up was delayed for an hour by low-lying mist this morning.
Redding showed good pace in the early stages of the race, running as the top Open Class Honda before the onset of rain and a loss of edge grip lost him time. The 21-year-old Briton battled on to secure tenth place at the chequered flag, in a race that saw many crashes due to the tricky conditions.
Scott Redding // 10th
“From the start I felt quite comfortable, but then the rear started to spin up a lot and, when the rain came, I had no edge grip on corner entry so lost a lot of time there. It was also the first time I’ve gone from dry to wet in a race. I’ve done it the other way around a few times, but going from riding the bike on slicks to riding it on wets is quite different, not to mention knowing when to come in to change bikes. Anyway, my timing was not too bad, although I maybe should have come in one lap earlier. I’m not really disappointed, but I’m not really happy either, because I was the first Open Class Honda for the first part of the race and I was feeling good before the rain, which we didn’t plan on. But, after these last two races, I’m confident we can bounce back soon.”
PBM Duo Defy Aragon Weather To Claim Finishes
One of the most dramatic rounds of the 2014 MotoGP World Championship took place at Gran Premio Movistar de Aragon at Motorland in Spain today as the weather played a part although sadly for PBM MotoGP duo Michael Laverty and Broc Parkes, they just missed out on the points.
The Penrith-based PBM team were looking to build on the double finish at Misano two weeks ago at the last of the European rounds before the three flyaway races in Japan, Australia and Malaysia.
Free Practice and Qualifying didn't quite go to plan for Ulsterman Laverty, on the Rapid Solicitors and Silkolene-backed Aprilia ART-powered PBM, nor Australian team-mate Parkes, on the Silkolene-backed PBM, neither of whom could break into the top 20.
Yesterday's qualifying session didn't offer much improvement with former British Supersport Champion Laverty on row seven of the grid with Parkes, twice runner-up in the World Supersport Championship, one row further back.
With dampness in the air as the bikes lined up for today's 23-lap race, and with rain a distinct possibility, the race got underway with both PBM riders making good starts. However, for Laverty it was short lived when a mistake on the opening lap lost him valuable time and from there he had to play catch up.
Parkes, meanwhile, had got away well as he diced with a number of Open class bikes, whereby he was eventually joined by Laverty and the pair circulated for much of the race just outside the points before the forecast rain arrived with around eight laps to go.
Eventually, both riders pitted to change bikes and rejoined the race but try as they might, they couldn't just squeeze into the points with Laverty crossing the line in yet another 16th place with Parkes two places further back in 18th.
It was the sixth time this season that Michael had just missed out on points in 16th and for Broc; it was his second successive 18th place. Despite the frustration, the Cumbrian team can take consolation that out of the 28 available finishes so far this season, Laverty and Parkes between them have brought the British-made bikes home in 25 of them, remarkably scoring top 20 placings in 21 races.
Parkes, who holds 21st in the championship table, has scored points in Assen (11th), as well as in Qatar and Indianapolis (15th) whereas Laverty, who occupies 24th in the standings, has managed just the one points scoring ride into 14th, also at Indianapolis, where both riders created history for Paul Bird's British team to score points in the same race.
Parkes is eighth in the Open class standings and third in Rookie of the Year. Laverty still occupies 11th in the Open class whilst importantly for the PBM team, they hold sixth place in the Constructor's table and 11th in the Team's standings.
The PBM MotoGP team is next in action at Motegi in two weeks' time for round 15 of the series, followed by back to back weekends at Phillip Island and Sepang before the final race of the season in Valencia on November 9th.
Michael Laverty: "That was a strange race today; I ran off track on the opening lap and lost a chunk of time. My pace in the dry wasn't quite as good as I had anticipated due to some cold tear on the rear tyre but I managed to claw back the guys in front. The rain began around half distance and made it a case of survival for a few laps before pitting for rain tyres. I finished up with another 16th position in the end which seems to be our favoured spot this year."
Broc Parkes: "I got a good start and was hanging onto the back of the Forward bike and Hondas but started to lose rear grip. Then the rain came and I stayed out too long on slicks and missed the window. I was happy with my pace this weekend just a little unlucky in the race."
Phil Borley, Technical Director: "We have struggled for pace at Aragon and have not been as competitive as I think we could have been, possibly due to the level of grip, so overall a frustrating weekend. The conditions for the race were very difficult and it was a pity we just missed out on the points, especially with so many factory riders having problems. We will continue trying to improve our performance at the next race in Japan."
Lorenzo excels in wet and dry conditions to take victory at Aragon
Round 14: Aragon MotoGP™ - Race
MotorLand Aragon, Sunday 28 September 2014
Bridgestone slick compounds available: Front: Soft, Medium & Hard. Rear: Soft, Medium & Hard (Asymmetric)
Bridgestone wet tyre compounds available: Soft (Main) & Hard (Alternative)
Weather: Dry/Wet. Ambient 18-18°C; Track 21-23°C (Bridgestone measurement)
In an eventful flag-to-flag race at MotorLand Aragon, Movistar Yamaha MotoGP’s Jorge Lorenzo showed superb pace in both wet and dry conditions to take his first victory of the 2014 MotoGP™ season.
Starting from the third row of the grid, Lorenzo got an excellent start and was engaged in a three way battle for the race lead with the Repsol Honda’s of Marc Marquez and Dani Pedrosa. In the middle phase of the race, light rain started to fall which then intensified, changing the track conditions from dry to fully wet in a matter of a few laps. Lorenzo made the decision to pit earlier than his closest rivals and swap to his spare bike fitted with wet tyres. He then proceeded to lap at a strong pace in the wet conditions, just as both Marquez and Pedrosa came unstuck in the wet as they persevered on slicks. Lorenzo then streaked away to take victory by 10.295 seconds from NGM Forward Racing’s Aleix Espargaro who claimed his first ever MotoGP podium finish after a brilliant ride to second place. In third place was Ducati Team’s Cal Crutchlow, who despite a valiant battle with Espargaro for second place, ultimately crossed the finish line just 0.017 seconds behind the Spanish rider to claim the final podium position.
Conditions at the start of the twenty-three lap Aragon Grand Prix were completely dry, with all riders initially selecting slick tyres. Although conditions were considerably cooler than yesterday – the peak track temperature was only 23°C - only seven of the twenty-three riders selected the soft compound front slick, with the remaining sixteen riders choosing the medium compound front. For the rear tyre, both Repsol Honda riders and LCR Honda’s Stefan Bradl opted for the hard compound rear slick, with the remaining Factory Ducati, Honda and Yamaha riders selecting the medium compound rear. For the Open-class riders, half the riders opted for the medium compound rear slick, the other half for the soft compound rear at the start of the race. Both the hard and soft compound wet tyres were used by riders in the final stages of the race after they changed bikes, with the hard compound wet tyre being used by two-thirds of the field, including the three riders on the podium.
Although he finished in thirteenth place at Aragon, Marc Marquez extends his championship lead over teammate Pedrosa to seventy-five points with four rounds remaining, while Movistar Yamaha MotoGP’s Valentino Rossi remains third in the championship standings and three points behind Pedrosa.
Shinji Aoki – Manager, Bridgestone Motorcycle Tyre Development Department
“Congratulations to Jorge and Yamaha on an impressive victory today, Jorge rode very well to manage the challenging conditions perfectly, and showed excellent pace in the wet and dry. Today’s race created every possible track condition for the riders, so it was important that our tyres provided good warm-up performance and predictability. Despite today’s cool temperatures, all three rear slick tyres, including the hard compound, were chosen by riders, as well as the soft and medium front slicks which proves the wide operating temperature our current generation of MotoGP tyres have. The general feedback from the riders this weekend was that our tyre allocation at Aragon was well-matched to the weather and track conditions, so this is a positive outcome for Bridgestone.”
Jorge Lorenzo, Movistar Yamaha MotoGP – Race Winner
“Today I had one of the best starts in my career, and I was impressed with my pace and feeling in the bike in dry conditions. It was a pity that it started to rain as I felt I could fight for the victory in the dry, but then I saw that Marc and Dani stayed out on track on slicks, so I thought I’d take a risk and pit earlier than them for wet tyres. I then found myself in first position after my first lap on wet tyres, so I just had to keep focused so I wouldn’t crash. This was my first victory in a long time, so I’m very proud and very happy.”