Press releases from the MotoGP teams and Bridgestone after the final race of 2015 at Valencia:
Lorenzo Clinches MotoGP World Championship Title with a Faultless Win in Valencia
Movistar Yamaha MotoGP‘s Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi raised their games at the season-ending Gran Premio de la Comunitat Valenciana this afternoon to unknown heights as they battled for the Championship Title. Lorenzo was unflappable as he defended first place from his pursuers from start to finish to secure a brilliant 40th MotoGP Grand Prix victory of his career and take the Championship Title by five points. Team-mate Valentino Rossi also had a phenomenal ride, cutting though the field like a knife through butter, to take a hard-fought fourth place and the runner-up spot for the 2015 season.
Valencia (Spain), 8th November 2015
Movistar Yamaha MotoGP‘s Jorge Lorenzo proved once again his racing pedigree, taking a superb win at the final round of the season at Circuit de la Comunitat Valenciana - Ricardo Tormo as he fended off two trailing rivals to the very end of the race. Valentino Rossi followed up two tension-filled races with an equally thrilling 30-lap sprint and delighted his fans with one of the strongest performances of his career. He rode from 26th on the grid to take a superb fourth place and finished the season as the World Championship runner-up.
Lorenzo started from pole after his perfect lap during yesterdays‘ qualifying and delivered the same standard today. He had a perfect start to take the hole shot with Marc Marquez and Dani Pedrosa following. Lapping consistent mid 1‘31s for most of the race, the Spaniard slowly built a gap of over 0.7s to his closest rival, but as the race progressed towards the midway stage, Marquez was able to win some time and slowly inched closer.
Suddenly the atmosphere changed as the possible outcome of the race became wide open again, however Lorenzo remained unshaken. Despite pressure from Marquez, and Pedrosa who started to close in with seven laps remaining, he rode like a true champion, not allowing his compatriots to make him lose his concentration for even a second.
There was close to nothing between the current and the soon to be World Champion, but still Lorenzo managed to hold his rival off. As Pedrosa had a second wind, he and Marquez started to fight amongst themselves. This was all Lorenzo needed to break away for a second time. Immediately acting on the situation he pulled away slightly while going into the final lap. Marquez and Pedrosa were still following his every move, but the Yamaha rider's pace was too fast for them to make an impression before Lorenzo crossed the line for a final time with a 0.263s advantage.
Team-mate Rossi started from the back of the grid in 26th place and rode the opening lap of a lifetime, completing the first lap in 15th place to climb up to ninth position at the end of the third lap as Iannone crashed out. He soon closed the more than one second gap to fellow Yamaha rider Bradley Smith, while setting a personal best lap of 1‘31.820, but the Italian was unable to make his move on the Brit straight away.
Rossi let his experience do the talking and waited one and a half laps before passing smoothly and soon moved up to seventh just a few minutes later as Petrucci, who was in front of him, ran wide. Next in line were the Espargaró brothers, lapping 0,8s in front of the flying Italian. He managed to close up to Pol Espargaró with 21 laps remaining and overtook him just a few corners later, making his brother the next target.
Rossi was unable to make it stick on his first attempt but the Spaniard had no answer to the nine-time World Champion's second pass. Dovizioso followed and was soon devoured by the Doctor, giving him fourth place in the provisional results, just five points short of a title win.
With 14 laps left to change the fate of the 2015 World Championship, Rossi now faced the task of bridging a 11.488s gap to Dani Pedrosa. He pushed as hard as he could, but the ride to the front of the field had asked too much of his tyres for him to be able to match the lap times of the top three riders. Though Lorenzo's pace slowed slightly as he battled the riders in second and third place, Rossi was unable to make up any ground and took the flag for the last time in the 2015 season in fourth place, 19.789s from the front.
Despite Rossi‘s brave performance, it was Lorenzo who gave Yamaha the Rider Title. Besides sealing the Triple Crown and filling the first two spots in the championship, Yamaha also gets to celebrate a strong performance from Monster Yamaha Tech 3 rider Bradley Smith. He took sixth in the race, just one spot behind team-mate Pol Esparagó, to ensure sixth place in the championship as the top satellite rider.
1st JORGE LORENZO
45'59.364 / 30 LAPS
There was a lot of pressure, especially at the end of the race, because I had been pushing all the time and I was quite tired from pushing so much. Dani recovered so much time and so many metres. He was at 0.5s at the middle of the race and he recovered everything, so I knew I had two riders behind me and that, if they overtook me, I would lose the championship, so it was a very difficult situation. I also felt that the right side of the tyre was destroyed, I was moving so much and I had to go very slowly entering right corners, so I couldn‘t keep the 1‘31-high up and it became 1‘32-low. I also couldn‘t see the pit board or how many laps there were left to the end. On the last lap I passed the last corner and saw the chequered flag and I couldn‘t believe that I won the race and the championship in the last moment. It‘s such a relaxing and enjoyable moment. I was crying on the honour lap, it‘s such a fantastic day for us. I equal Wayne Rainey, I equal Kenny Roberts Sr, I equal Ayrton Senna in the motorsport world with these three premier class World Titles, it‘s unbelievable! We have to enjoy this day, this week, because you can‘t often live this emotion.
I‘ve ridden with Valentino, Marc, Casey and Dani on the track. For me these are the best riders in the 21st century. The first championship title is the first one and thus very special, but to be in the championship with these four legends on track was very important to me. I was always behind in the championship recovering points and it‘s a special moment in the last race to become champion, so the championship couldn‘t have had a more emotional ending.
I don‘t want to think about 2016 now. We will see later during the test, or after the test. Now I just want to enjoy it with the team like crazy, to feel this moment completely with no end, because it‘s not easy to repeat and it‘s not easy to become champion again. We have to enjoy it completely now, tonight, this week, next week, this is for sure!
I was giving everything I have, the rhythm was very low, but I didn‘t give up. I knew the importance to put everything on the track and I did, like with yesterday‘s pole position.
4th VALENTINO ROSSI
+19.789 / 30 LAPS
We built this season from the first race and it was a great season, I was always competitive and I never made any mistakes. I thought after Motegi that I had the potential to win the championship, but unfortunately from the race at Phillip Island something changed.
Jorge has once again proved that he is untouchable when he is on form, and deserves this fifth title. He pushed to the maximum this year, always challenging and never giving up. I‘m really proud to be part of the Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Team and share in this amazing moment. Of course it takes more than just a rider to win a title so I have to thank all the crew members who have put in all their efforts and professionalism this season to make victory a reality. On the other side of the garage Vale has also shown that he is still one of the best riders in the world and a key protagonist in the title challenge. His ride from 26th to fourth was incredible. To have two such incredible riders fighting together for the title is an amazing thing to see, not just for us but for the fans across the world. Jorge, Vale and the entire team really deserve the Triple Crown they fought so hard for, the perfect gift for all the fans who support us in our racing.
Marquez and Pedrosa celebrate season finale with double podium finish
GP Motul de la Comunitat Valenciana
MotoGP 2015 Round 18
Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez and Dani Pedrosa have concluded the 2015 season with a second and third place finish in the Valencia GP.
Starting from the front row behind Lorenzo, the three riders broke away opening up a five second gap to Dovizioso after just seven laps. Dani struggled at the beginning and spent the majority of the race adapting to the situation, at one point dropping down two seconds behind Lorenzo and Marc.
However, with two laps to remaining Dani had closed the gap to 0.2 seconds and attempted a pass on Marc. He ran wide and Marc regained the place immediately and the two Honda riders lost contact slightly with race leader Lorenzo, finishing second and third behind the newly crowned 2015 World Champion.
Today Dani celebrated his 100th MotoGP class podium, becoming just the second rider – along with Valentino Rossi – to reach this milestone. He also sealed fourth place in the World Standings behind his teammate Marc in third.
2nd Final Championship Standing: 3rd
"It was a very difficult race. I came out focused, as usual, and initially Jorge pushed strongly. I found it hard to follow him, and at that time Dani was two seconds off us. There were a few laps in which I was really on the limit, forcing the front tyre - which moved around a lot. With about six laps to go, I felt that we could win because I had caught up to Jorge. I did not expect Dani to come through so quickly, and when he passed me he ran wide. I used that to pass him back but Jorge had escaped by half a second making it impossible to recover the gap, even though I rode the last lap and the entire race at 100%."
3rd Final Championship Standing: 4th
"I'm very happy and I enjoyed the race - especially in the final part! I was a little bit distant from the battle in third. I couldn't find the way to go faster because I had problems when braking and cornering; it's been hard for us to find a good setup for the bike this weekend and I was able to be up at the front but without a good feeling. During the race I tried to counter this, but it was difficult. In the end I found the way to be faster and I was able to ride better and recover ground. When I caught up I saw that there were two laps remaining and I tried to attack, but when I overtook Marc I ran wide and he returned the pass. I am happy because what I can take from here - as well as the third place in the race and fourth in the Championship - is the attitude and the progress we have made in the final part of the season. We've been very strong and I hope that we can continue that this winter and next year."
HRC Executive Vice President
"This is not the atmosphere we wanted to experience at the end of an unforgettable championship. We understand that it’s been a very difficult day for Valentino, after leading the championship for 17 races and losing by just five points in the final race must be very disappointing. However, on the other side we cannot accept the strong accusations he has directed against our rider and Honda in the past weeks and in today's post race press conference. Together with the allegation he made after Phillip Island, there is no evidence to support these accusations, only the fact that Marc took five points away from Valentino’s competitor in the championship, Jorge.
Today Valentino has alleged that Marc never attempted to pass Jorge, who has clearly had a very good pace all weekend which he demonstrated by taking a strong pole position in qualifying. Marc was struggling to stay behind him during the race and both him and Dani have done a great job to not lose too much distance to Jorge. Marc’s plan was to attack in the last lap, as we have seen many times in the past if the opportunity presents itself, he will try. Dani’s pace increased at the end of the race and he overtook Marc but ran wide and Marc was able to immediately pass him back, but this is racing.
We are sorry that Valentino doesn’t believe this is the case, but we are certain both Marc and Dani were pushing 100% to achieve the best result for the Repsol Honda Team and all our partners as always. We cannot accept that these accusations continue to surface time after time, as this is the perception of one person - which we respect - but it is not the reality.
Valentino is a great champion and clearly an intelligent individual so we truly hope that in time, once the dust settles, he can reevaluate what has happened and accept this was another great race from a wonderful season, and it’s a shame to spoil it. Marc and Dani have taken points away from both Valentino and Jorge this year, this is the nature of racing."
Valencia GP: Dovizioso seventh, Iannone crashes out. Pirro finishes twelfth
Andrea Dovizioso finished seventh in the final round of the 2015 season, the Valencia GP held at the Ricardo Tormo circuit in Cheste, while his team-mate Andrea Iannone was forced to retire after a crash on lap 3. Wild-card Michele Pirro ended the race in twelfth place.
Both Ducati Team riders got off to a good start from the third row: at the end of lap 1 Iannone crossed the line in fourth place and Dovizioso in fifth. After Iannone’s crash, Dovizioso held on to fourth until lap 12, but then lost some more positions over the next few laps to finish the race in seventh.
Michele Pirro, who started from row 4, moved into tenth on lap 2, and he held on to that position until lap 16. The Ducati Test Team rider was then passed by a recovering Crutchlow and then by Viñales and finished the last round of the season in twelfth.
The final championship standings see Iannone fifth overall and Dovizioso seventh, while Ducati and the Ducati Team confirm their third place in the Constructors’ and Teams’ standings.
Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team #04) – 7th
“Obviously I cannot be satisfied with today’s result, because I am not riding the way I want and am unable to get the best potential from the bike. Some of the characteristics of the GP15 make it difficult for me to make the difference, and so I hope that we will manage to make the right modifications next year, taking advantage of next season’s regulation changes.”
Andrea Iannone (Ducati Team #29) – DNF
“My race began well with a good start, and I tried to push as hard as possible as I had nothing to lose. I tried to stay with the top guys and I was pushing Pedrosa, who had an excellent pace. Unfortunately I made a mistake and crashed out, but sometimes you have to be prepared to risk everything to try and reach an important objective. I want to thank my team for this fantastic year, as well as Ducati and all the guys in Bologna for the support they have given me since I joined the factory team. I am very happy with the final result even though we lost out on fourth place, which I was aiming for, and I am sure that next year we will be ready to fight in a big way.”
Michele Pirro (Ducati Test Team #51) – 12th
“In the end I am a bit disappointed, because I rode well especially at the start, but then I struggled a bit and lost contact with the second group where there was also Dovizioso. However I tried to do my best and bring home some useful indications for the team, even though this is the last time we used the Bridgestone tyres. I want to thank Ducati for giving me this opportunity as well as all the guys in Ducati Corse for their great commitment. From Tuesday onwards we will start working again to try and make the Desmosedici even more competitive next year.”
Luigi Dall’Igna (Ducati Corse General Manager)
“The championship has concluded with a race in which we didn't obtain the results we had expected. I feel really sorry for Iannone, who today made the only mistake in his entire season, but I have to say that overall he had an extraordinary championship. Dovizioso has been in a bit of difficulty over the last few races, but in any case took the GP15 five times to the podium this year. Now we immediately start working for 2016 with two days of tests here at Valencia on Tuesday and Wednesday.”
POSITIVE VALENCIA FINALE FOR ESPARGARO AND VIÑALES
Team Suzuki Press Office – November 8.
The 2015 MotoGP™ World Championship wrapped-up in Valencia where Aleix Espargarò and Maverick Viñales ended in eighth and 11th positions, again in the points and consolidating their 11th and 12th positions in 2015 series standings.
Espargarò had a good start, taking advantage of his fourth place on the grid, and he set a very fast-pace in the early laps, keeping in touch with the top riders around fifth position. Unfortunately his performance dropped as the rear tyre became worn, taking away valuable traction and mid-corner speed. This led him to lose contact with fourth place and allowed him to be caught from behind. He was fighting to keep his pace but had to give away several places, ending the race in eighth.
Viñales’ race was almost the opposite: He made a good start, but then ran wide in turn two and was overtaken by several riders. His race strategy then became one of recovery, trying to keep in touch with those in front of him and keeping a fast pace; which has proven to be one of his strengths throughout the season. His capability of getting faster-and-faster as the race develops allowed him to recover many places, lapping in the second part of the race with the same pace of those who were fighting for fourth-to-seventh positions.
The final event of the season was very emotional for both riders. Apart from the races where they didn’t get the chequered flag (three for Espargaro and two for Viñales), they were both well into the points for most of the calendar and frequently in the top-10, meaning that the approach for this first year was very positive.
Now, Team SUZUKI ECSTAR is already thinking ahead for the new season, which will begin on Tuesday and Wednesday this week with the usual opening IRTA test in Valencia.
Satoru Terada – Project Leader:
“Finally the season has come to an end and we can make a balance of our progress. Today’s race was positive; Aleix did a very good first part of the race, fighting very close to the podium and with a fast pace. Then he had to give up when he had a drop in the rear tyre performance, but he could finish well into the points. Maverick did almost the opposite; he had to struggle with overtaking at the beginning and then managed to find a comfortable pace that allowed him to improve his performance and his lap times. Again, his result was well into points, showing that he is moving forward fast.
“As it is the last race, we can now take stock. We expected to finish the Championship in better positions than 11th and 12th, but for sure, this has been a very positive season in terms of development and experience. Our riders made good improvements, both in their riding style with our machine and in terms of information and feedback that they gave us. We know we have some weaknesses, but we are working hard on them and we had very useful technical direction from the riders. Also next season we will be faster getting to grips with work at the tracks because we have the knowledge base we have built-up this year, therefore being able to start from a solid basis in every race. Now we have to focus on 2016: We’re going to test the new tyres in the next few days and then also the new electronics. We have a tight-but-clear program and I think we can make many improvements.”
“It’s a pity that we had some troubles with the rear tyre, it was destroyed in the last part of the race and this prevented me keeping the good pace I was lapping with. I had a good start, I kept contact with fourth place and tried many times to overtake, but he overtook me on the straight, it was impossible to get ahead. Then in the second half of the race, the tyre was performing poorly and I couldn’t fight to keep the sixth place. I’m disappointed, but at least we ended up in the points. Now we have a long winter to work and improve the machine, because the improvements we have made throughout the year were not enough and not what I was expecting. We have fought hard to stay in the top 10 but we need to improve a lot. The positive thing is that now we have one year of experience that can be exploited for next season; we have references and data for all tracks and this will make our job easier.”
“I’m a little disappointed because I made a positive start but in the second corner someone pushed me out and I got wide, losing positions. When I could make my own pace, I proved to be as fast as the riders lapping in fifth-to-seventh positions. At the end I could get some points and finish the season in a positive position; we were expecting something more but we have learnt a lot. The season has been positive and without the two crashes I had, we could have placed in the top-10, so we are positive for the next year. Now we need to focus on the next season, we already know the main weakness points and we have much more information from this year. ”
APRILIA IN THE POINTS WITH BAUTISTA IN THE LAST RACE OF THE SEASON
ALBESIANO: “THE PROGRESS MADE THIS YEAR WAS CONFIRMED ONCE AGAIN TODAY”
Valencia (Spain), 8 November 2015 - With Bautista riding his RS-GP to a points finish, Aprilia finishes out its rookie MotoGP season. In the last race at Valencia the Spanish Aprilia Racing Team Gresini rider finished in fourteenth place after a very consistent race where he started off well and then found and managed his race pace.
Stefan Bradl, who steadfastly occupied points positions for almost the entire race, was hindered by a problem with his brakes and a significant drop in tyre performance in the last two laps, crossing the wire in eighteenth place.
ROMANO ALBESIANO (Aprilia Racing Manager)
“After the good race in Malaysia and the preceding races in the Pacific tour we were expecting a bit more. With Stefan we had a poor feeling with the brakes that penalised him and then, for Bautista as well, there was a drop in tyre performance in the final laps, particularly a clear deterioration of the right part of the rear tyre. All in all things didn’t go that badly since we finished in the points despite these problems and this is confirmation of the progress we have made in the championship this year. Now we’ll get started again and prepare for next season.”
FAUSTO GRESINI (Team Manager)
“Today was a bit more difficult that we had expected, especially in the second half of the race. In the first phases Bautista and Bradl held good positions but then Stefan lost a lot of ground in the last laps unfortunately. Alvaro in any case brought home a good 14th place and in general we can say that we finished out the championship season improving and that’s what’s important. I would like to thank Aprilia, the team, our partners and the riders who put forth their best effort during this season of development, providing their important contribution to developing this project. Now we will look forward: there is still a lot of work to do but now we know that we are capable of improvement."
“I got off the line well, moving up several positions, and then I tried to manage the tyres in order to finish well. With a full tank I struggled a bit because I kept losing the front end when I tried to brake hard. As the laps went by the problem decreased and I was able to find my pace, even overtaking Stefan who had a similar pace but who was slower than me in a few points. I’m pleased to finish out such a demanding season this way. We finished all the races – except for Qatar but that wasn’t our fault – and this is very important. Throughout the year we improved a lot and for that I would like to thank Aprilia and the entire team, because we worked very well together. Now we need to focus on the new season to keep improving and to be more competitive.”
“It’s a shame because throughout the entire weekend we were fast and we prepared well for the race, but unfortunately today we were unable to repeat our performance from practice. I didn’t feel comfortable braking. I struggled to stop the bike and I was forced to use the rear brake a lot, so I stressed the rear tyre too much. That meant that in the last five laps I didn’t have any more grip and I dropped back quite a few positions, which I was very disappointed about.”
Redding salvages a point from difficult Valencia weekend
Valencia, Spain – 8 November 2015: Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS rider, Scott Redding, declared the Valencia weekend his most difficult yet, despite fighting his way into the points in today’s MotoGP race.
Redding has struggled all weekend to find a good feeling with his Honda RC213V, with the problems continuing in the first half of the 30-lap MotoGP encounter. But as the race progressed the feeling improved and this was reflected in the 22-year-old Briton’s lap times.
Over the final ten laps Redding was able to work his way up from 20th position, passing the riders ahead of him to finish 15th at the chequered flag.
The Valencia race was the last for Redding as a Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS rider, as he will switch teams for the 2016 season.
Scott Redding: 15th
“This weekend has been the most difficult one of the season and we don’t really know why, we just struggled with a lack of grip and a lack of feeling. To be honest, I’m not happy with the result, but it could have been worse. From the start I didn’t have any front grip and the bike was skidding a lot under braking. I was missing rear traction as well and I had accepted it was going to be a long old race. But then halfway through the bike came to me and I was able to push a bit more. The lap times were improving with every lap and I was able to regain positions in the last ten laps. My goal, as always, was top ten, but it was a big ask this weekend because we’ve had a lot of difficulties since the first practice session. It wasn’t the race I was looking for, but it also wasn’t as bad as I thought it might be. Now it’s done and I must look to the future, but I’d like to say a big thank you to Marc van der Straten and the team for their support this season.”
Michael Bartholemy: Team Principal
“It’s been a difficult weekend, from the first lap to the last, but we came away with a point when we thought even that would be a struggle ahead of the race. This was our first season in MotoGP and I think we’ve learnt a lot and we will go into next year with some lessons learnt and more experience. Thank you to Scott for this season. It was good to work again with someone who has been a big part of this team since we started and we wish him every success for the future.”
Stunning TOP 10 for Petrux in 2015 MotoGp season. Yonny: "Thank you guys. I will miss this family"
The extraordinary season of Danilo Petrucci ends with the Top 10 in the World Championship. Yonny ends in 14th position and send a thankfull message to the team after two intense seasons.
These are the high lights of OCTO Pramac Racing under the checkered flag last of #TheGrandFinale won by Jorge Lorenzo at Valencia.
Petrux started very well managing to gain seventh place after a fight with Pol Espargaro and then being able to pass Smith. On the ninth lap Petrux lost 2 positions due to a mistake at turn 2 but he managed to remain focused to end 10th rejecting the attempt to attack Vinales.
Yonny lapped fast and managed to recover four positions in the first lap before going to take Bautista for the 12° place. On lap 11 the succesfull attack on Bradl then the fight lost with Crutchlow. Yonny fininished in 13th position his last GP with Pramac Racing
Numbers - Petrux finished the season in tenth place with 113 points. A remarkable achievement celebrated by a long applause of the team.
Yonny closes in 14th place with 56 points.
For OCTO Pramac Racing the satisfaction of sixth place in the teams classification (169 points).
10° - Danilo Petrucci - OCTO Pramac Racing #9
Following a good start I fought with Smith and Pol Espargaro and I started to struggle also because the tyre consumption was very high. I tried to push because my goal was to finish in ninth place but I'm happy with this Top 10 as well. We worked hard for this result and want to thank those who helped me: I say thank you to the Campinoti family who gave me this opportunity, to Francesco Guidotti who first believed in me, to Daniele Romagnoli and all the guys that have been extraordinary. I can not wait to start working for next season.
13° - Yonny Hernandez - OCTO Pramac Racing #68
I am happy because I had a good pace throughout the race. I want to thank the team that supported me in these two years. I feel very strong emotions right now because I am separating from a group that I consider a family. But this is life. Surely I will never forget the passion and the love I feel for this team and this team gave me.
Hector Barbera and Avintia Racing Open Class World Champions
08/11/15 Avintia Racing MotoGP - Grand Prix of Valencia - RACE
Hector Barbera and Avintia Racing achieved their great goal today at Valencia, the goal they had set last year when the team signed with Ducati: to win the Open Class MotoGP World Championship. The Spanish rider made an almost perfect season with eight wins and 13 pole positions in his category. Barbera had been leading the standings until the race at Misano, where Loris Baz took the top position and made things more difficult for the Avintia Racing rider. But in the overseas races, Hector managed to reduce the gap again and he arrived at the championship finale at Valencia five points ahead of the Frenchman, who will be part of the Spanish team from next Tuesday.
The happiness of the team was dampened somewhat because of Mike Di Meglio’s farewell. He was unlucky in his last race with the team and crashed after suffering a problem with the throttle of his bike in turn five. Avintia Racing wishes him all the best for the future and says a big thank you for the last two seasons.
HECTOR BARBERA #8 / 16th (P1 Open) @HectorBarbera
I’m extremely happy, because winning the race and the Open Class Championship at home is something amazing. During all the weekend, I enjoyed riding the bike and the crowd was absolutely incredible. I want to say a big thank you to the team, because they gave the maximum during all the season to reach our target, and of course, I also want to thank all the sponsors and everybody who helped us to make this dream come true. We finished the season in the best possible way and this is winning the race. In the last few races we gave 200% and I think we achieved the best possible outcome. Now it’s time to celebrate, but from Tuesday we’ll start to work towards 2016. It will be a year with a lot of changes that I hope will help us to be more competitive. Thanks!
MIKE DI MEGLIO #63 / DNF @Mikejpp63
It was a difficult race. In the morning, we tried something that gave me a good feeling, but I pushed too much and crashed. In had a good start in the race, but my feeling with the front was different from the warm up and I don’t know why. Then I had a problem with the gas and I crashed. I want to congratulate Hector and the team for winning the Open Class title. The last two years have been great and we worked well as teammates. I wish them the best.
Baz confirms the second place in the Open Championship
Loris Baz ends his rookie season in second place in the Open. The Frenchman has collected four class wins in Mugello, Assen, Misano and Brno on his Yamaha Forward bike and thanks to the 28 points gathered he ended 5 points away from Barbera in the standings.
Baz, who started from 15th on the grid, struggled from the early laps because of the low grip and lack of confidence with the rear of his Yamaha Forward and was forced to give way some positions to his opponnents. The Frenchman crossed the line 19th, the third place among the Open.
Toni Elias placed 20th, just behind his team-mate. 24th at the start, the Spaniard, with Forward Racing since the Grand Prix of Aragon, closed the season in Valencia and got the 27th place in the standings overall thanks to the two points achieved at Sepang.
"It was a difficult race. Unfortunately since the first laps I struggled to find the right confidence with the rear and was not able to keep the pace of the other Open bikes. I had little grip, but I was able to reach the finish line. Too bad for not being able to win the Open title, we were close to the top of the category for much of the season, but at the end I lost something. Overall I can say I’m happy with this first rookie season: I struggled at the start, but I continued to work hard and thanks to all the team I achieved my goals ahead of schedule".
"A difficult season is over for me: I did not have a bike but with the team I had the chance to return to MotoGP. I'm happy and I want to thank Giovanni and Forward Racing for this beautiful opportunity which opens new perspectives. Compared with the competition I can’t say I’m 100% satisfied. I struggled at the start, I had little confidence with the full tank, but after a few laps I found myself fighting with Di Meglio, Laverty and West. I kept my pace and at the end I finished very close to Loris".
Espargaro powers to 5th in season finale at Valencia
Monster Yamaha Tech3 Team rider Pol Espargaro stormed to 5th today to close the year strongly in front of his home crowd of over 110,000 people at the Gran Premio Motul de la Comunitat Valenciana. The young Spaniard commenced his battle from the third row and completed the first lap in 8th, whilst attempting to jump past the riders in front. He set into his fierce race pace and after setting a series of consistent lap times, he was up to 6th by the mid point of the event. Afterwards he eventually soared across the finish line in 5th to clinch the leading satellite honours at the last round of the 2015 MotoGP season thus completing a positive weekend. The solid result today saw Espargaro overtake Danilo Petrucci n in the championship standings and finish his second year in the premier class in 9th position.
Meanwhile, Bradley Smith fought determinedly to conclude the 30 lap sprint right behind his teammate at the Ricardo Tormo circuit today. The young Briton began the GP from the rear of the second row on the grid and bolted forward when the lights went out before quickly locking into his formidable race rhythm. He then started his ascent, before brilliantly diving past Andrea Dovizioso, his championship rival, on lap 26. The fight continued and Smith carried on his pace as he diced right until the chequered flag but finished ahead and sealed 6th as well as the leading satellite rider position in the World Championship standings.
Position : 5th Championship : 9th Points : 114
"Finally, I am pleased with the result and I’m happy to end the season like this. It was a good GP and I completed the race just behind the factory riders so we can’t complain, plus it’s a really positive feeling to close the year in this way. We had to face some difficulties during the season but we worked hard and it seems that we found a solution for some of them here. I was struggling a bit with the front tyre when running on full fuel load. However, in the race, as soon as the fuel level decreased and the laps passed by, I found my rhythm and in the end, I managed to overtake Dovizioso even though the Ducati is a beast on the straight! I passed him a few times and initially it seemed that I couldn’t open a gap, but I was finally able to post a series of rapid lap times which enabled me to escape and then ride comfortably until the end of the GP. It has been a tough year and probably one of the most disappointing ones in the World Championship for me. We weren’t able to make the most out of all of the races and it goes without saying that it was quite frustrating at times. Yet, the team has always been behind me and has given me a lot of support. We have a good feeling internally which we kept even during the difficult times and this is the most important thing. Of course, we may have had a few disagreements, but this is what happens when you want to grow and improve. So I must say thanks to them for always supporting me, and now, we will try to advance next year. I hope all of the bad luck that we had this season won’t repeat itself in 2016 and I am sure we can have a strong year together.”
Position : 6th Championship : 6th Points : 181
"It has been a fantastic season and almost perfect after completing all of the 18 rounds, even though I’m a bit disappointed to miss out on our target of finishing as the leading satellite rider today. However, I can’t be hard on myself as I ended up in the top six and I collected a total of 181 points over the year. I am very proud of this, but I am especially pleased with my performance in the second half of the season. In all honesty, after the summer break I think I made another step forward with my qualifying as well as some of my race performances. Anyway, this track wasn’t easy for me and we struggled a bit all weekend, but to be there fighting in the second group was satisfying. We have to look back on all of the ups and downs of the year and then improve on the negatives because we have to do a better job next season. In this sport, you can’t just stay at the same level, so we need to see how we can make another step forward. 2016 will be a new challenge and experience, but I’m already very excited to begin on Tuesday at the test. I’m also looking forward to a bit of a rest as it’s been a demanding year with all of the work that we’ve been doing for MotoGP, plus the Suzuka 8 Hours as well. I want to give a big thanks to all of the team who did a fantastic job. Although I didn’t make any mistakes, they didn’t either with their jobs and to make a Yamaha YZR-M1 work for 18 races without any issues, highlights the great job they have done. I am proud of everyone at Tech3 and thank you to all. In addition, I also want to say thanks to Bridgestone for all of their support and it has been fantastic for me to work with them for the past three years. They have done a tremendous job and for every season that I have been in MotoGP, they have upped their performance continuously, especially this year. It would have been easy to just roll out and enjoy the season, but they came with even better material and they’ve set the level very high in MotoGP."
Hervé Poncharal - Team manager :
“What an incredible day to close an amazing year of racing in MotoGP. It was really intense all race long whilst we were watching our two guys, who both did an excellent job. Yet, I also cannot hide the fact that we were checking out what was happening at the front so I must give big congratulations to Yamaha again as well as Jorge. Regarding our guys, it was a strong weekend overall and a positive finish for both of them. The start was average but they never gave up and pushed all the way until the chequered flag. In addition, it was quite interesting to see them fighting with the Suzuki and Ducati riders. Ducati have an incredible engine whilst Suzuki have a good chassis, but out of all the three, I think we had the strongest and most efficient package. It’s super to have our two guys in the top six at the last round, plus Pol moved up one place in the championship after taking one point out of Petrucci. Furthermore, his result helped us to secure 4th in the team standings. On the other side of the garage, Bradley did really well today as he has done all year, so I must congratulate him. He is the only rider other than Valentino who has scored points at every event in 2015 with his worst result being 8th, which highlights the fantastic job that he has done. I’m really pleased to see Pol end on a positive note as it was very important for him to get a strong finish to the season. This will help us to go to the test on Tuesday with an even more positive frame of mind and overall, we are a happy team so we will celebrate tonight.”
CRUTCHLOW CLAIMS IMPRESSIVE TOP 10 FINISH IN VALENCIA
LCR Honda’s Cal Crutchlow finished the 2015 MotoGP season with a ninth place at the Grand Prix of Valencia on Sunday after an eventful day at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo. Having qualified in fifth for the final race of the year hopes were high for the Briton, but a safety concern with his number one bike meant he had to switch to his spare and start from the back of the grid.
Despite that major setback, Crutchlow produced a hugely creditable ride as he made his way through the field to eventually finish inside the top 10. The result ensured the 30-year-old finished the season in eighth place in the world championship standings with 125 points. While satisfied with his performance, Crutchlow admits he is now looking forward to pushing on again next year and challenging for podium finishes.
Cal Crutchlow #35 (9th - +35.924)
"We had to start from the back of the grid because of a safety concern with my other bike. I changed bikes and then had to be patient on the first lap as I had no heat in the tyres because I had to do the warm-up lap behind the safety car. So I wasn’t able to push and I only made up three places in three laps and that made it really difficult to come back through the field.
“But honestly I was really pleased with my pace once I got going after ten laps and it probably would have been good enough for fourth place today. It was disappointing not to be able to do that and be there, but my bike has not let me down all year and it was just unfortunate we had to start from the back of the grid today.
“I think it was an average year for me, but when I took the decision to stay where I am for the next two years continuity was key. I think with some new parts next year we can be back where we belong challenging for podiums and I’m looking forward to that and am grateful for the faith they have shown in me.”
MILLER BIDS A FOND FAREWELL TO LCR HONDA IN VALENCIA
Jack Miller signed off his time with the LCR Honda team by finishing 21st at the Grand Prix of Valencia in what was the final round of the 2015 MotoGP world championship. The Australian produced a determined ride to ensure he saw the chequered flag in the last race of his rookie season at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo.
Afterwards Miller insisted he had learnt a great deal about the premier class during his time with Lucio Cecchinello’s team. The 20-year-old identified his 15th place finish at Phillip Island as his best performance of the campaign and said he was pleased with the progress both he and his team had made over the course of the last 12 months.
Jack Miller #43 (21st – +1.05.212)
“First of all I’d like to thank the LCR Honda team for taking this risk and putting me in this year. It’s been an awesome year, I’ve enjoyed it a lot. We’ve had some ups and downs and didn’t quite achieve the goal of a top-10 finish that we wanted, but we showed some really strong performances during the season and I’m looking forward to coming back to the MotoGP class next year.
“I think we improved a lot during the course of the year – especially compared to when we tested here at the start of the year, we’ve improved by nearly two seconds and that’s not easy to do. I think Phillip Island would have to be our best race of the season and now I’m looking forward to improving again next year.”
Lucio Cecchinello – LCR Honda Team Principal
“It was an honour to work with Jack and giving him the opportunity to learn the MotoGP class category. When he arrived from Moto3 everybody thought that he wouldn’t be able to make such a big step, but he definitely confirmed with his attitude and talent that he could make it.
“I’m very happy that twice this year he finished as best Open class rider, he also regularly beat many other Open class riders so he definitely did a good job. Of course, everybody always wants more good results, but MotoGP is a really tough category – especially this season – and I think he did really well and wish him all the best for the future.”
Nicky Hayden says goodbye to MotoGP with seventeenth place in final race
Sunday, 08 November 2015 17:48
POWER ELECTRONICS rider signs off after thirteen seasons, 216 appearances and a world title to his name
It's over. One of the most exciting seasons in recent memory concluded today with a race that went very much to form, as Jorge Lorenzo wrapped up the win and the world title from pole position. The Spaniard has shown the pace all weekend here and he backed up his practice potential by dominating all thirty laps from the front, clocking a new lap record as he held off the challenge of Márquez and Pedrosa. Behind the top three Valentino Rossi put up a valiant display from the back of the grid to finish in a highly-creditable fourth place, but it wasn't enough to retain top spot in the championship as Lorenzo picked up his fifth title in all classes.
Nicky Hayden contested his 216th and final MotoGP race today, as he signs off after thirteen seasons in motorcycling's premier class. The 2006 World Champion was named as a MotoGP Legend on Friday but it was business as usual today for the POWER ELECTRONICS rider, who made up three positions on the first lap as he tried desperately to take the final Open victory of the season. For the majority of the race it looked as though he would do just that but as tyre performance dropped off dramatically over the final laps he lost crucial positions, eventually dropping back to seventeenth overall. His team-mate Eugene Laverty's season came to a premature end, the Irishman still struggling with a burn suffered in the last race at Sepang and forced to retire on the 23rd lap.
17th Nicky Hayden: “The start was really good. The first few laps weren't too bad, I lost a couple of positions but the bike was working good and I was racing with guys that had been faster than me most of the weekend. Things weren't going so bad, I was really working hard on the brakes and asking a lot of the front tyre but I was getting away with it and the bike stayed consistent. Unfortunately I was't able to get into the 32s, which I wanted to and needed to, and then the last five or six laps I felt a big drop on the right side of the tyre. The left side was incredibly consistent but the right side felt like it maybe had some cold tears in it, maybe it didn't keep the temperature with the slightly cooler track today. It wasn't spinning so much but entry grip got bad and then it was disappointing with three laps to go to see Barbera come past me on the front straightaway on the inside and then on the next lap Redding came past me on the outside. I'm not happy to lose those positions, although I did manage to get one back on the last lap on Bradl, which was nice. It would have been nice to be first Open today, we managed it for 27 laps but that's why you've got to do all 30! It's been a great ride to be a part of the MotoGP tour for the last thirteen years and to win a world title. For me as kid growing up at the end of a gravel road in Kentucky proves that with the right attitude and support you can turn your dreams into reality. Thanks for the memories!”
Eugene Laverty (DNF): “I made a good start, probably my best of the year, and tucked in behind Rossi for the first three corners. Everybody made a gap for him so I followed him through and was able to gain some places. The bike was working well for the first half of the race but after that I started to have problems with my foot burning again. It wouldn't have been so bad if it wasn't already raw from Malaysia but once the footrest got up to sixty degrees I knew I was in trouble. I tried to stick it out but I had to come in. My motto is "ride her 'till she blows!" and I have never had to stop for anything like this before so it was hard to take but we have a test to think about on Tuesday and if I didn't stop I might have not been able to ride on Tuesday. After Malaysia I was on crutches for a week so I had to be smart about it. Overall it has been a strange year. We have had some good moments but to score nine points this year is much less than I feel we deserved. It was good to have a team-mate of the quality of Nicky because we could measure our work and we did a good job, but we didn't have a package that was capable of consistent points-scoring finishes. When we did have the opportunity to show our pace we were strong but we were never going to be fighting for the top ten, that's the long and short of it. I am looking forward to a new challenge with a new bike next season. I have a great team behind me that has won many World Championships and we now have the experience of a full season together in MotoGP so I am optimistic about next season.”
Broc Parkes retired at the Valencian GP
Valencia, November 8, 2015 - The e-motion Iodaracing MotoGP Team ended the final race of the 2015 season with a retirement. The Australian Broc Parkes who replaced the injured Alex De Angelis in the Valencian GP, has retired at the end of lap 22 due chatter problems and excessive sliding.
Started in the grid ahead of Valentino Rossi, because of the penalty imposed to the Yamaha rider, Broc Parkes was making his race along with the Open riders, until that excessive movements of the Aprilia ART convinced him to don't risk to crash coming back to the pit box.
The 2015 season for the Team e-motion Iodaracing ended with a 28th place in the drivers' championship with Alex De Angelis thanks to the two points gained in the GP of Catalonia and Britain. Alex De Angelis, who was injured in the fall of FP4 in Japan, has been replaced in the GP of Australia and Malaysia from Damian Cudlin, than Broc Parkes raced in the Grand Prix of Valencia.
BROC PARKES - MOTOGP RIDER # 23 - GP COMMUNITY 'VALENCIA - DNF - "I tried to ride my own race on the Open riders that were in front of me on the grid. In the first laps I was quite attached to the group, but then the bike has started to have problems of chattering and sliding, so big that I risk falling out, that's why I retired. I want to thank all members of the Team e-motion Iodaracing for the passion that they have in their work, they made me feel immediately a part of them, then I want to thank also Giampiero Sacchi for the opportunity he gave me making me race in MotoGP after long time I didn't".
Lorenzo wins Valencia Grand Prix in style to clinch third MotoGP™ crown
Round 18: Valencia MotoGP™ - Race
Circuito Ricardo Tormo, Sunday 8 November 2015
Bridgestone slick compounds: Front: Extra-soft, Asymmetric & Soft; Rear: Soft, Medium & Hard (Asymmetric)
Bridgestone wet tyre compounds: Soft (Main) & Hard (Alternative)
Weather: Dry. Ambient 22-23°C; Track 29-30°C (Bridgestone measurement)
Jorge Lorenzo is the 2015 MotoGP World Champion after the Movistar Yamaha MotoGP rider led from start to finish and rode at record pace to secure victory ahead of the Repsol Honda Team duo of Marc Marquez and Dani Pedrosa who finished in second and third place respectively.
Starting on pole position after setting a new outright Valencia lap record in qualifying, Lorenzo got the holeshot to lead into the first corner and led the entirety of the thirty-lap race – setting a new Circuit Record Lap of 1’31.367 along the way. However, the race was by no means an easy contest as Repsol Honda Team’s Marc Marquez pushed Lorenzo the whole way, with his teammate Dani Pedrosa also making a late push for victory. At the chequered flag though it was Lorenzo who would take his seventh victory, 0.263 seconds ahead of Marquez who in turn was a further four-tenths of a second behind in third place. The frantic pace the three riders that finished on the podium rode at resulted in a new race time record being set at the Ricardo Tormo circuit of 45’59.364; almost eleven seconds quicker than the previous record time.
The final race of the year took place in warm and dry conditions, with slightly cooler track temperatures than those experienced yesterday with a peak of 30°C recorded at the start of the race. As there was no significant change in the conditions compared to the earlier sessions, tyre choice for the race resembled that from Free Practice 4 yesterday with the medium compound rear, soft compound front pairing being the most popular combination. Twenty-three riders selected the soft compound front slick, with the remaining three riders opting for the asymmetric front slick option. Sixteen riders selected the medium compound rear slick for the race, with ten riders instead selecting the soft compound rear slick.
Lorenzo’s Valencia victory sees him finish the 2015 MotoGP season on 330 points, five points ahead of his teammate Valentino Rossi who finished in fourth place today, and second in the championship standings after a valiant effort from the back of the grid. Marquez ends the season in third place in the championship standings on 242 points having taken five wins.
Hiroshi Yamada – Manager, Bridgestone Motorsport Department
“Congratulations to Jorge on winning his third MotoGP championship and fifth in all classes. It was a dominant performance from Jorge, leading from start to finish and riding at a record pace along the way. I’d also like to congratulate Valentino on his effort to finish in fourth place and for giving everything he could to fight for the championship right until the very end. It has been a fantastic season with record crowds, close racing and many memorable moments and everyone at Bridgestone is proud to have been involved in this special championship. For the whole time during our role as Official Tyre Supplier to MotoGP we’ve pushed the boundaries in terms of technical development and I am happy that our efforts have helped make this MotoGP season reach new heights in terms of rider performance and safety. I would like to thank the manufacturers, teams, Dorna, IRTA, the FIM and all MotoGP fans for your support over the last fourteen years.”
Shinji Aoki – Manager, Bridgestone Motorcycle Tyre Development Department
“The tyre choice the riders made for the race was as we expected, with the soft compound front and medium compound rear slick proving to be the most popular combination. The pace was extremely quick throughout the race, with the top three riders ending the race well under the previous race time record, which was an indication of the excellent durability and predictable behaviour of our tyres. Overall, I am very happy with how our tyres performed at Valencia in what was our last MotoGP outing, with a new Circuit Best Lap record, Circuit Record Lap and total race time records being set. We now will shift our focus to continuing to offer all that we have learnt on the MotoGP circuits to riders around the world through our range of BATTLAX motorcycle tyres.”
Jorge Lorenzo, Movistar Yamaha MotoGP – Race Winner and 2015 MotoGP World Champion
“There was a lot of pressure during this race, so I just focused on going as fast as possible even though the bike was sliding around and moving a lot. Now I am five-times world champion, and all of us together did an unbelievable job. Yamaha made an unbelievable bike and my team this year were perfect and I am very proud to have won this world title for Spain.”
Lorenzo wins #TheGrandFinale to become champion
Movistar Yamaha’s Jorge Lorenzo led from flag to flag to become the 2015 MotoGP™ World Champion in one of the most dramatic races of the year at the Gran Premio Motul de la Comunitat Valenciana. In the process Lorenzo became only the third rider in the premier class to overturn a points deficit in the last round to become champion and the first since Giacomo Agostini in 1966 to win the final race of the season to clinch the title.
His teammate and title rival Valentino Rossi, who started from 25th on the grid, rode one of the races of his life to cross the line in fourth, but despite his best efforts, the ‘Doctor’ could do nothing to stop Lorenzo becoming champion. Lorenzo eventually took the race win by just 0.263s from Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez, with his teammate Dani Pedrosa in third after thrilling finish that could have seen a very different outcome to the title battle.
#TheGrandFinale certainly lived up to the hype as 110,000 fans at a sold out Comunitat Valenciana – Ricardo Tormo circuit bore witness to one of the most tense and thrilling conclusions to a MotoGP™ season ever.
When the lights went out it was pole man Lorenzo who led into the first corner, a lead he would not relinquish for the duration of the race. Immediately he set off at the front, closely followed by the two Hondas of Marquez and Pedrosa plus Andrea Iannone on the Ducati Team GP15. Rossi enjoyed an amazing start, making up 7 places off the line, and the Italian was up to 16th by after the very first corner.
Rossi was a man on a mission as he carved his way through the field. The ‘Doctor’ was into 15th by the by the end of the first lap and 12th after lap 2. He then passed Stefan Bradl (Aprilia Racing Team Gresini) for 11th on the third lap, before swiftly disposing of wildcard Michele Pirro (Ducati Team) to move into 10th.
Still on lap three, Iannone lost the front at turn 12 and crashed out of the race, meaning Rossi was now into ninth. At the front, Lorenzo was riding brilliantly, managing the gap to Marquez at around the 0.4s mark. Pedrosa had started to fall back from his teammate, but the front three had now opened up a 3.5s gap to the fourth placed Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team).
Rossi continued his charge, and by lap five he was embroiled in a battle for sixth with the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 duo of Bradley Smith and Pol Espargaro along with Danilo Petrucci on the Octo Pramac Racing Ducati. On lap six he overtook Smith for 8th, a lap later Petrucci ran wide and Rossi was up into seventh, but by this point Pol Espargaro had escaped 1.2s further up the road. Rossi set off in hot pursuit.
By lap nine he had closed down Pol Espargaro, and there was contact as he passed the Spaniard on lap 10 for sixth, but nothing was going to slow Rossi’s progress. On lap 12 Rossi made his move on Aleix Espargaro on the Team Suzuki Ecstar GSX-RR in to turn 1, but Espargaro fought back, with Rossi having to wait until turn 5 to make it stick. Unbelievably he was now into fifth and a few corners later he took Dovizioso for fourth, but by this point he was 11 seconds behind Pedrosa in third.
It would turn out to be as good as it got for Rossi, as he didn’t have the pace to run with the front three as by this point he was lapping 0.3s slower than the men in front of him.
At this point Lorenzo was still managing the gap at the front beautifully, and every time Marquez appeared to close him down, he opened up a 0.4s lead once more and the duo were starting to pull away from Pedrosa. It was not over yet though, not by a long way.
With 8 laps to go Pedrosa reduced the gap to the second placed Marquez to under 2 seconds. Suddenly Pedrosa was the fastest rider on track and with three laps to go, only half a second separated the front three.
With two laps to go, Pedrosa made a move on Marquez into second, but Marquez fought back immediately. This swapping of places allowed Lorenzo to open up the tiniest of gaps at the front and as he crossed the line to start the last lap, he had a 0.347s lead over Marquez.
Despite Marquez throwing everything at him on the last lap, Lorenzo held on to take the race win by less than three-tenths of a second from Marquez. It was the 28-year-old Mallorcan’s seventh win of the season.
It was in incredible finish to one of the most epic seasons in the history of the World Championship and it meant that Lorenzo (330pts) had overturned Rossi’s (325pts) seven-point lead to lift the title by a slender five-point margin, in the process lifting his fifth World Championship title (250cc – 2006, 250cc – 2007, MotoGP™ - 2010, MotoGP™ - 2012, MotoGP™-2015).
With Marquez taking second and Pedrosa recording his 100th MotoGP™ podium in third, Rossi crossed the line 19 seconds behind Lorenzo in fourth.
Pol Espargaro was fifth as the leading Satellite rider, 2.8s ahead of his teammate Bradley Smith in sixth, with the British rider securing sixth in the championship standings in the process and the honour of top Satellite rider in 2015.
Dovizioso finished in seventh as the leading Ducati, ahead of Aleix Espargaro in eight. LCR Honda’s Cal Crutchlow was forced to start from the back of the grid after experiencing issues with his bike before the race started. The British rider pulled off a great race to ride form 26th through to 9th, with Petrucci completing the top ten.
EG 0,0 Marc VDS Scott Redding took the last points scoring spot in 15th, with Avintia Racing’s Hector Barbera in 16th as the leading Open Class rider, with the Spaniard securing the Open title in the process as his rival Loris Baz (Forward Racing) could only finish in 19th.
Nicky Hayden (Aspar MotoGP Team) bowed out of the MotoGP™ class by finishing as the leading Open Honda in 17th with Australian Jack Miller (LCR Honda) crossing the line in 21st.
Rabat bows out of Moto2™ with victory
The 2014 Moto2™ World Champion Tito Rabat rode an imperious race at the Gran Premio Motul de le Comunitat Valenciana to secure his 13th career intermediate class victory. It was a fitting way for the most successful Moto2™ rider in the history of the class to bid farewell before he moves up to MotoGP™ in 2016.
The original race had to red-flagged after a multiple rider crash at the first corner that saw Morbidelli, Syahrin, Schrotter, Folger, Simeon, Mulhauser, Fuligni and Vierge all crash. Luckily most were unhurt, but Syahrin and Morbidelli were taken to the Medical Centre for further treatment.
The restarted race was reduced to 18 laps, and saw Rabat enjoy a race long duel with his compatriot Alex Rins on the Paginas Amarillas HP40’s Kalex, eventually beating him to the line by just 0.309s. It capped a remarkable comeback from the broken radius that forced Rabat to miss the flyway rounds, and sent the sold out Comunitat Valencian - Ricardo Tormo circuit in raptures as the local hero pulled off the win.
Moto2™ rookie of the year Rins (234pts) secured his tenth podium of the season to ensure that, although he lost out to Rabat (231pts) in the race, he won the battle for second in the championship standings with his fellow Spaniard by 3 points.
Derendinger Racing Interwetten’s Thomas Luthi made it back-to-back podiums as he crossed the line in 3rd, just over 3 seconds further back from Rins, in the process securing 5th in the championship.
Forward Racing’s Lorenzo Baldassari was fourth, as the 19-year-old Italian ended the season in style with three top five finishes in the last three races. Speed Up Racing’s Sam Lowes rode superbly to go from 10th on the grid to fifth, meaning he finished the season in fourth in the standings with 186 points.
Paginas Amarillas HP40’s Luis Salom made it three sixth-placed finishes in a row, ahead of the 2015 Moto2™ World Champion Johann Zarco (Ajo Motorsport) in seventh. Zarco debuted the 2016 Kalex frame in the race, and while he missed out on a new podium record, he finished the season with 352 points, a new record in the intermediate class.
Oliveira wins race but Kent takes Moto3™ title
Leopard Racing’s Danny Kent became the first British World Champion since Barry Sheene in the 500cc class in 1977 at the Gran Premio Motul de la Comunitat Valenciana. Kent’s only title rival, Red Bull KTM Ajo’s Miguel Oliveira, knew that he had to win and Kent finish 15th or lower to deny the Brit the title and he did his part by taking the race victory, but was denied the championship by Kent’s mature performance.
Starting from fourth, Oliveira took the lead at the very first corner and rode superbly in the leading pack to control the race and win by 0.198s from Estrella Galicia 0,0’s Jorge Navarro after Niccolo Antonelli (Ongetta-Rivacold) crashed at the last corner, taking out podium challengers Efren Vazquez (Leopard Racing) and Romano Fenati (Sky Racing Team VR46) in the process.
The left Drive M7 SIC’s Jakub Kornfeil to complete the podium, but Sunday belonged to Kent as he finished in ninth to secure the title at his fourth attempt. The British rider had to start from 18th on the grid, but by the end of lap 1 he was already in 15th. Slowly but surely he made his way through the field up to 11th, before being embroiled in a battle with his teammate Hiroki Ono over the last couple of laps. Kent dropped down to 12th on the last lap as Ono made his move, but with the three riders falling ahead of him on that last corner; it meant Kent finished in ninth, secured 7 points and ended the 38 year wait for a British World Champion. That meant Kent (260pts) secured the title from Oliveira (254pts) by six points to become the first British lightweight champion since Dave Simmonds in 1969.
It was Navarro’s fourth podium in the last five races, as the Spaniard took seventh in the standings at the expense of the unlucky Vazquez. Kornfeil returned to the podium for only the second time in his career, after his second placed finish at Silverstone earlier in the year.
Red Bull KTM Ajo’s Brad Binder crossed the line in 4th after starting from 9th and working his way through the pack during the race, ahead of Enea Bastianini on the Gresini Racing Team Moto3 Honda in fifth.
RBA Racing Team’s Isaac Viñales recorded his 11th top ten finish of the season in sixth, in front of pole man John McPhee (SAXOPRINT RTG) who faded during the race to finish in seventh.
Kent’s teammate Ono beat him to the line to secure eighth, with Kent ninth and Phillip Oettl (Schedl GP Racing) completing the top ten.
Danny Kent - the 2015 Moto3 World Champion
Jorge Lorenzo celebrates after winning his third MotoGP world title