2011 Misano MotoGP Race Result: Convincing Victory Taken In Second Half Of Race

Results and summary of the MotoGP race at Misano:

Jorge Lorenzo has won the Misano MotoGP race in convincing style, holding off a tough challenge by Casey Stoner in the first half of the race before taking control, going on to close the gap in the championship by 9 points.

Stoner's start from pole was strong, but not as strong as Lorenzo's, the Yamaha rider diving into Turn 1 ahead of Dani Pedrosa, who had quickly dispatched Ben Spies to hold on to 3rd. The three leaders quickly pulled a gap over the rest of the field, but the order among them was far from certain. Lorenzo led from the front, pushing hard to drop the chasing Repsol Hondas, but Stoner was pushing just as hard to keep the pressure on the Spaniard.

The pace the two were generating took its toll on the third member of the party, Pedrosa just dropping slowly off the back of Stoner. Lorenzo kept pushing, with Stoner responding, threatening to attack at any point. But as the race passed the one-third point, Stoner's pace started to lag just a fraction. A few laps more and a gap appeared, and once Stoner lost touch with the leader, the race was over. Lorenzo kept up his blistering pace for lap after lap, building his advantage to over seven seconds at the end of the race. At the end, victory came easy, but not anywhere near as easy as it looked.

Once Stoner had lost touch with Lorenzo, his paced dropped off significantly, from high 1'33s, to 1'34s and then 1'35s. The Australian's slowing pace allowed Dani Pedrosa, who had maintained a constant pace behind the leaders to catch the Australian. By the time the two Repsol Honda teammates came together on the track, the difference in pace was apparent, and Pedrosa was soon past Stoner, dispelling any rumors of team orders inside the Repsol team. Pedrosa quickly dropped Stoner and went on to secure an easy 2nd place, Stoner forced to settle for 3rd.

If the race at the front turned stultifying once Stoner lost touch with Lorenzo, behind that it was anything but. The second group, consisting of Andrea Dovizioso, Marco Simoncelli and Valentino Rossi - Rossi having got an astounding start from 11th to end the first lap in 6th. After a dismal couple of early laps, Ben Spies joined the back of the group. The speed of the two Hondas and single Yamaha was just a little too much for Rossi, the Marlboro Ducati rider dropping off the back to end the race in 7th.

Places 4 to 6 were hard-fought, with Dovizioso leading Simoncelli early, only for Simoncelli to come past and try to push for a gap. But as the laps clicked off towards the end, Dovizioso closed back onto Simoncelli, passing his fiercest rival to take back 4th. The last two laps turned into a do-or-die affair, with Dovizioso leading Simoncelli, Simoncelli diving past Dovizioso, Dovizioso diving back and then Spies trying to take the pair of them on the final entry into Quercia. In the end, it was Simoncelli who hung on to 4th, holding off Dovizioso to the line, with Spies stuck in 6th. 

Alvaro Bautista rode another strong race on the Rizla Suzuki - specially decked out in a chrome livery - fighting through the field to finish 8th, ahead of Hector Barbera on the Mapfre Aspar Ducati and a decent result for Cal Crutchlow on the Monster Tech 3 Yamaha, rounding out the top 10.

Lorenzo's victory closes the championship gap from 44 points to just 35, bringing some tension back into the title race. With just 5 races to go, there is still a lot of work to do, but things are looking a lot brighter for the Spaniard compared to a week ago.

Results:

Pos. No. Rider Manufacturer Time Diff
1 1 Jorge LORENZO YAMAHA 44'11.877  
2 26 Dani PEDROSA HONDA 44'19.176 7.299
3 27 Casey STONER HONDA 44'23.844 11.967
4 58 Marco SIMONCELLI HONDA 44'29.230 17.353
5 4 Andrea DOVIZIOSO HONDA 44'29.267 17.390
6 11 Ben SPIES YAMAHA 44'29.969 18.092
7 46 Valentino ROSSI DUCATI 44'35.580 23.703
8 19 Alvaro BAUTISTA SUZUKI 44'42.555 30.678
9 8 Hector BARBERA DUCATI 44'49.379 37.502
10 35 Cal CRUTCHLOW YAMAHA 44'49.597 37.720
11 7 Hiroshi AOYAMA HONDA 44'51.425 39.548
12 17 Karel ABRAHAM DUCATI 44'52.383 40.506
13 5 Colin EDWARDS YAMAHA 45'05.226 53.349
14 14 Randy DE PUNIET DUCATI 45'14.243 1'02.366
15 24 Toni ELIAS HONDA 45'32.033 1'20.156
Not Classified
  65 Loris CAPIROSSI DUCATI 15'21.868 20 laps
  69 Nicky HAYDEN DUCATI 3'20.984 26 laps

 

2011
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Comments

The only good racing was for fourth, and it was good (and props to Simoncelli who kept his head as well as his speed for the best race I have seen him manage) but Lorenzo owned that one, and the championship is still go. Can we now put to bed the idea that the Hondas are untouchable and actually accept that it is the rider(s) on the day who really are the significant factor? Lorenzo did the business and daylight was second.

Pretty poor reaction from the Italian fans though.

Well that Yamaha does have a new engine. It`s not demeaning to the riders to say they are riding the best bike, considering Pedrosa and Dovi leap of performance from the first half of 2010 I would say is demeaning to Honda to say they don`t have the better bike. And the saddest (to me) consequence of the 800cc era is that the bikes matter more than ever before.

P.S: Please note that nowhere on my comment is the word Casey.

Last year he bagged 4 wins and 9 podiums.
Obviously this year he missed a couple races but still I don't see a big difference in his results.
Plus he insists that for the first time the bike has been very similar between the end of 2010 and the beginning of 2011, which helps him a lot compared to his usual struggles on a non-refined bike early in the season.

It`s a good thing I wrote "Pedrosa and Dovi leap of performance from the FIRST HALF of 2010" then.

In 2010 his finishing positions were (when he finished)

7 - 2 - 5 - 1 - 8 - 2 - 2 - 2 - 2 - 1 - 1 -2

There is the leap of performance

Since we're talking of the first 5 races of 2010 let's settle on a leap of performance from the first third of 2010.
No leap of performance from the majority of 2010 and 2011.
Honda definitely did a good job finally listening to Pedrosa, losing the habit of changing everything to begin the new season with a sub-par bike and letting the riders sorting it out for the first races.

Okey, you are right I don`t know enough to tell when they had the technical "leap" but I do believe they kept improving the bike from there, maybe not a hole lot and of course Yamaha kept working too but I do think the Honda was clearly better than the Yamaha at the beginning of 2011.
Anyway the problem probably is that I don´t like this 800cc bikes and tend to complain about them too much.

Hopefully next year we will complain about the fuel limits for the 1000s ;-)

Great ride from Jorge today but with 4 Hondas behind him you have to think that it was down to just being on terrific form today. Good ride from Dani as well, needs to win against Casey more often if he's be taken seriously next season..
I think Rossi did the right think keeping his own council this weekend. It really is the race where it matters though good grid position helps. Lightening start and top ducati by some way again.. And just behind a factory Honda and Yam. No question the old boy still has it..

Presiozi and Del Torchio need the boot (or a boot up the backside)..Going off todays wsbk they have built a very good bike so why have they tried to built something they don't understand for motogp?? The idea that they haven't found the right rider yet(to challenge not token results) is a nonsense, talk about denial. Ducati can clearly build a good bike if they stick to what they know, get on with it there are only a handful of races left..

You have Jorge, Casey and Dani who had very similar laptimes in practice and in the race, except Jorge was the only one able to lap consistently at this speed.
Then you have Spies on the wheels of Dovi and Sic with again very similar laptimes.
The fact that you have 4 Hondas and only 2 Yamahas in the top6 is simply due to the fact that Honda has 4 official riders, and Yamaha only 2.
Then you see the natural order on each bike with Jorge obviously better than Spies and Pedrosa and Stoner ahead of Dovi and Sic.
I don't think this race showed us any difference due to the bike, Jorge could have easily finished second if Stoner did not fade away (he said he was tired?) and Spies had the pace to finish 4th, he was just 7 tenths away partially because he had a bad start (again).
Today the riders definitely made the difference.

than Dovi and Simoncelli... he just got a bad start AGAIN and then couldn't get past them in the end. With slightly different luck in the last lap he might have finished 4th.

So I agree, no systematic Honda advantage at Misano.

Lorenzo managed this race in a amazing fashion. Instead of the usual Stoner stalking, passing, then running away Lorenzo was able to keep his head down and keep building what turned into a huge lead. Aslo this race was probably the best thing for the series as far as drama is concerned. To bad Spies had to settle for 6th but he needs to work out what goes on in those first few laps and why he doesn't seem to have the pace from the word "go".

Stoner's M.O. this year has been to get out front and pull a few really fast laps then manage the whole thing. When he can't do that he seems to have trouble going that little bit extra fast for the whole race. Jorge worked hard to keep him back in the beginning, that seemed to have made the difference. They were more equally matched at this track as far as practice times too. Even if Stoner takes the title still, this can only be good for us spectators.
I didn't notice but I heard Jorge was getting boos on the podium. Bad sportsmanship from the fans is just as crappy as bad sportsmanship from the sportsmen.

Re: Fans. I watched BBC coverage and Lorenzo got clearly audible boo's when his name was announced on the podium.
Not that it put him off much, he cupped his ear with his hand as if to say "Louder, I can't hear you!" and then did one of his customary leaps off the top step of the podium.

Still, bad form from supposed fans of the sport. The guy is out there, busting his ass and risking his life and puts in a faultless showing, wheelies & waves to the crowd and gets it thrown back in his face.

Good race for 4th, Simo did a great job. Haven't watched Moto 2 yet (looking forward to that!) but what was Zarco doing in 125? He says he didn't get a good enough drive & was going to lose anyway but that is BS. If he tucked in behind his screen, he had that. Too busy rubbing it in Terols face. That one will be in "Sports fail" videos on Youtube for years to come I think!

Rarely have I laughed as loud while watching GP's as I did during that finish of the 125cc... What on earth was Zarco thinking?? He had that one for grabs after a fierce battle. After the race his comment was approximately this: 'I did not get a good drive from the last corner, so I tried to stop Terol from passing me'. By looking rearward, stretching out your arm and waving?? Brilliant, haha

Poor Zarco...painful lesson in how to finish close races...there is a reason why there are no rear view mirrors on racebikes.