2011 Sachsenring MotoGP Race Result: Thrilling Three-Way Fight Sees Close Finish

Results and summary of the MotoGP race at the Sachsenring:

Dani Pedrosa has taken a decisive victory, in only his second race after returning from surgery for his broken collarbone. The Repsol Honda rider was made to work hard for his win, first working his way past Casey Stoner and Jorge Lorenzo, before finally seizing control towards the end of the race.

Pedrosa got his customary holeshot, but the Spaniard immediately had company from Jorge Lorenzo and Casey Stoner.  Lorenzo was past before the lap was out, diving underneath the Repsol Honda at the bottom of the hill into Turn 12. With Lorenzo leading, a large group formed with nothing to separate them. Behind Lorenzo, Andrea Dovizioso had sliced his way forward to hold 2nd for the first couple of laps, before his teammate Casey Stoner barged past him on his way to Lorenzo. Dani Pedrosa sat assessing his position behind the leaders in 4th, while Marco Simoncelli and Ben Spies hung close behind Pedrosa. Spies was the first to drop off the back of the group, with the Hondas of Andrea Dovizioso and Marco Simoncelli following at one-third distance.

That left the three protagonists to fight it out among themselves, and it turned into a tense and nerve-wracking fight. Casey Stoner was the first to seize the initiative from Lorenzo, taking the Yamaha rider at the bottom of the hill, while Pedrosa closed on his compatriot from behind. Stoner pushed to gain an advantage, but it never grew more than a few tenths, before he fell back into the claws of Lorenzo and Pedrosa. 

Next up was Lorenzo. The Spaniard put a hard pass on Stoner at the bottom of the Waterfall, the steep hill leading into Turn 12 to take back the lead, and Pedrosa followed past Stoner at Turn 1 a couple of laps later. It was Lorenzo's turn to try and pull a gap, but once by Stoner, Pedrosa got up a head of steam and would not be denied. Pedrosa chased down Lorenzo, passing the Spaniard as the pair crossed the line to start lap 22. Once past, he was gone, and an elated Pedrosa went on to take victory in just his second race after returning at Mugello.

The race for 2nd was not settled, however. Once Pedrosa got past Lorenzo, Casey Stoner got in on the action as well, diving past Lorenzo on the brakes into Turn 1. But Stoner had left his chase for Pedrosa too late. Though the Spaniard remained tantalizingly close, he could never close on his Repsol Honda teammate and try to attempt a pass. Instead he still had Lorenzo to deal with. The Yamaha man tried as they crossed the line to start the last lap, but Stoner held him off into Turn 1. Lorenzo then tried lining him up at the top of the hill, but a small mistake saw him appear to lose touch. But the last two corners would prove fatal to the Australian: Stoner blocked into Turn 12, and Lorenzo seized his chance, holding a 125cc line through Turn 12 to dive up the inside of Stoner in the final corner, stealing a precious 4 points from his championship rival to close the gap to 15 points. Stoner was forced to settle for 3rd, and far from happy about it.

The battle for 4th was equally entertaining, Andrea Dovizioso and Marco Simoncelli slugging it out for most of the race. Their battle offered Ben Spies the chance to catch the pair, the Yamaha man passing Simoncelli for 5th in the final corner, Dovizioso winning the chase to the line in 4th. Further back, an ecstatic Alvaro Bautista fended off attacks from the factory Ducatis to secure 7th, crossing the line ahead of Nicky Hayden and Valentino Rossi after an outstanding performance on the Rizla Suzuki. Rossi lost drive with a gearshift problem out of the final corner, and was forced to cede 8th to his teammate Hayden. But after the disastrous results in practice on Friday and Saturday, the Italian was relieved that a change to the weight distribution found in the morning warm up had worked out. Being able to brake harder and deeper into the corners meant that Rossi could at least be a little competitive.

Results:

Pos. No. Rider Manufacturer Time Diff
1 26 Dani PEDROSA HONDA 41'12.482  
2 1 Jorge LORENZO YAMAHA 41'13.959 1.477
3 27 Casey STONER HONDA 41'14.050 1.568
4 4 Andrea DOVIZIOSO HONDA 41'22.995 10.513
5 11 Ben SPIES YAMAHA 41'23.201 10.719
6 58 Marco SIMONCELLI HONDA 41'23.405 10.923
7 19 Alvaro BAUTISTA SUZUKI 41'39.933 27.451
8 69 Nicky HAYDEN DUCATI 41'39.992 27.510
9 46 Valentino ROSSI DUCATI 41'40.058 27.576
10 5 Colin EDWARDS YAMAHA 41'45.973 33.491
11 8 Hector BARBERA DUCATI 41'51.426 38.944
12 17 Karel ABRAHAM DUCATI 41'51.630 39.148
13 14 Randy DE PUNIET DUCATI 41'51.897 39.415
14 35 Cal CRUTCHLOW YAMAHA 41'51.959 39.477
15 7 Hiroshi AOYAMA HONDA 42'06.998 54.516
16 24 Toni ELIAS HONDA 42'24.817 1'12.335
17 50 Sylvain GUINTOLI DUCATI 41'28.441 1 lap

 

2011
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Comments

They should hold all 18 races at Sachsenring next year. I wouldn't mind if all the races were that good! Great pass by JL, doing what he had to do. Great battles the whole way through the field

Fantastic race from the Suzuki camp. Took the fight to both Ducatis, first passing Rossi then nicky both on the final lap! Not much of a fan but will be looking at their performance at leguna where the weather is really hot during race time.
Also good ride from Lorenzo keeping the championship alive

Laguna track temps except for a bizarre west coast heat wave back in 2006 have been pretty mild for this race. Weather is calling for highs in the mid 60's next weekend and there won't be much of a change from that in the mean time. The summer has been pretty cool here except for about 1 week in June. I will let you know about Sunday after I get back.

I have read this a couple of times, that a lot of fans think that the temps at Laguna get quite extreme. Not true, probably the most temperate track on the calendar. That is why it is thrown in in late July because from April-October it really doesn't matter, the weather is nearly the same, so they go there when everyone else is 'usually' getting high summer heat.

I live north of there but I travel to the Monterey/Salinas area probably 2 dozen times a year and it is almost always the same, morning sea layer with late afternoon sun and moderately low temps.

between Sic and Spies on the last lap?

Dani isn't an alien, he's a monster.

It looked to me like Spies was pissed about something...obviously happening before the last turn where the cameras picked them up. It's hard to tell for sure...maybe he was just reacting to the unexpected 5th after the big gap he had to make up.

Edit: if he was pissed he got over it. In his interview he said that Sic and Dovi were scrapping (he called it "fair play") and he couldn't pass until then. So maybe just adrenaline and a touch of frustration venting rather than anger.

By the way, thanks for the terrific tyres which allowed great, clean and hard racing without any artificial and excessive degradation.

It was the fact that Stoner wore out his rear tyre while Pedrosa didn't that decided the outcome.

Tyres are artificial, they naturally degrade over a distance.

wore his tyre because of how he rode, not because they were specifically manufactured to last significantly less than the race distance and thus artificially "spice the show". People may think Bridgestone might revamp theyr assymetric tyres for the sake of safety, but as far as the racing goes, nobody has anything on them, which is why they rose to MotoGP dominance and exclusivety.

It´s a shame he couldn´t manage a tech 3 kind of recovery from the collarbone fracture, otherwise the standings would be closer at the top. Last lap was a revealling one: Lorenzo showed championship hunger, Stoner didn´t.

Following on from Mugello, the Sachsenring is undulating with swooping bends (a bit short and maybe a little too left handed tho!). It's the computer designed cakecutter style stop / start F1 tracks that generally don't work with these little 800cc engines.

Laguna up next and another undulating track (verrry short though) - and this one is one to watch with your dinner on your lap.

It's funny but it really looked like Lorenzo completly messed up his exit of turn 10 on the last lap (just before the fast right hander), lost a couple of tenths doing so, but at the breaking of turn 12 Stoner, of course unaware of that, took a very defensive and much slower line on the inside, thus allowing Lorenzo to come back at him frightfully quickly and pass him on the inside of turn 13. I guess that's why he called the pass a "miracle" !

Beautiful races in 125 and motogp !!!

For the first time in my life I was urging Lorenzo to overtake. It looks like the season may not be such a walkover for Stoner after all. Sure, losing 25 points in a DNF earlier in the season helps, but JL appears to have a competitive Yamaha once again.

Maybe Stoner's loose style on the powerful Honda is wearing his tyres more quickly than his team-mates and rivals.

Looking forward to Laguna. :)

really good race and great ride from a resurgent Dani Pedrosa. Great ride also from Jlo to pull back more points in the final corner.. Great result for the championship.
Caseys comments afterwards that he didn't think they(he) had a chance of the win, make his performance look better though still a bit ragged.

Any chance of an interview with preziosi on just what his plans are and why he still thinks that carbon is the way to go. We know it's not working, but are they working on something new or still hoping that the next tweak will make the difference. The silence coming out of ducati sounds like a dumbfounded one.. Talk to us Ducati, has Rossi convinced you to drop the cf, do you have a choice???? you don't look too good at the mo and you are far too important to motogp for this to continue for another season.. Your fans also need an urgent update!

well that ought to be interestng. Bostrom knows his way around Laguna and every once in a while he gets a bug up his ass and becomes, for one afternoon, unbeatable

I think it was 2005 or so, he had a great superbike race there, riding a 999 and leading start to finish with Mladin stuck right on his back tire. He's a local so it was a hugely popular win for the fans in the corkscrew, lap after lap you could hear them coming over the top of the hill and know that the Ducati was still in front

Casey's a great rider - Lorenzo is a great racer. I have not seen stoner come on on top of many last lap battles (though he'd did pull it off last year against VR).

Great race period.

It looked like Stoner thought his way out of that win. He said afterwards he couldn't make the break so he decided to slow down & hang with Lorenzo & Pedrosa. Bad idea. Dani gapped him while he was fighting with Jorge & then he got mugged at the last corner. He is better off doing what he does best & pushing out front. Lorenzo has unbelievable corner speed, he was always going to put one up the inside.
Well done Dani, welcome back!
Championship is far from over.....

What? I've heard this before ...I think Casey is both a great rider *and* a great racer. Casey certainly didn't back down when he and Rossi went at it hammer & tongs Laguna Seca 2008 ... watch the video, tight racing back and forth, the Duc slewing side to side under braking... full on racing.

No doubt - casey is amazing. But I would remind you that he did not come out on top in that battle *either* .

In 2008 Stoner, on a faster bike, did not win the war or many more battles. To me, CS was a pretty defeated man after that the battle in Laguna 08 - this was most evident in Brno.

Note to self, Casey has won the most races in the 800 era.

That was the best meeting of the year so far, with lots of battles through the field, and the 125 and Moto2 races were superb. Did not expect Pedrosa to win in his second race back from injury, and it was good to see Bautista and Suzuki get a more encouraging result.
As for Ducati, we are half way through the season and they seem to be getting nowhere, in fact with the GP11.1 they seem to have gone backwards.

Damn good race. There were really 4 groups battling it out for a good portion of the laps. Also Lorenzo getting 2nd stole 8 points from Stoner not 4. He moved up 4 points in the standings but had he not gotten the pass and finished 3rd with Stoner 2nd it would have been a 4 point swing in Stoner's favor.