2015 Motegi MotoGP Race Result: With A Little Help From A Friend

Results Below:

Dani Pedrosa charged from fourth place to take the win at the Motegi circuit in drying conditions Sunday and, in the process, helped Valentino Rossi extend his lead in the MotoGP championship.

Rossi, taking advantage of a slight tow and a slowing Jorge Lorenzo, grabbed second place to extend his lead over his Yamaha teammate to 18 points. And Lorenzo, who at one point led the race by nearly four seconds, settled into third as his wet-weather front tire deteriorated in the final laps as the track dried.

Pedrosa's teammate and current world champion Marc Marquez passed Andrea Dovizioso late in the race for fourth. Dovizioso, who was as high as third on the contest early on, held on for fifth. Cal Crutchlow (6th) came out on top of a late-race battle with Bradley Smith (7th). Katsuyuki Nakasuga rode a satellite Yamaha to a surprising eighth. Hector Barbara and Scott Redding rounded out the top 10.

The track, which had a partly dry racing line at the end, hardly started that way. It was Rossi who got the rare holeshot at Turn 1 of the Twin Ring on the soaked track. But by Turn 2, Lorenzo began showing his speed in the wet when he grabbed the lead from Rossi and began to pull away almost immediately. By the second lap, Lorenzo had a 1.2-second lead. Two laps later, the lead grew to two seconds.

With 18 laps remaining, it was Lorenzo with a full three seconds on Rossi who, in turn, had Dovizioso close. But back in the pack, things began to change. Behind Dovizioso, Pedrosa picked up his pace and began to put a bit of distance to his teammate, Marc Marquez. As the next several laps ticked away, Rossi managed to pull a gap on Dovizioso but could not do much about Lorenzo's pace at the front. 

At this point, Pedrosa began setting the fastest laps of the race of any rider. He made quick work of a slowing Dovizioso and closed on Rossi. With nine laps to go, he passed Rossi for second place at Turn 9. Rossi managed to jump in behind Pedrosa and picked up his pace slightly. For the next three laps, Pedrosa -- who was three seconds behind Lorenzo when he passed Rossi -- was running more than a second a lap faster than the race leader. 

With slighly less than seven laps to go, Pedrosa slipped by a slowing Lorenzo to take the lead. A lap later, Rossi closed within a second of Lorenzo. While Pedrosa opened a large gap at the front, Rossi closed on Lorenzo's tail.  With four and half laps remaining and under pressure from Rossi, Lorenzo ran wide at Turn 3 and Rossi slipped into second place. Lorenzo's pace continued to falter and soon, Rossi had a three-second gap on his teammate and title rival.

Pedrosa finished with an eight-second gap over Rossi in second place to take his first win of the season.

Result:

Pos. No. Rider Bike Time / Diff. 
1 26 Dani PEDROSA Honda 46'50.767
2 46 Valentino ROSSI Yamaha 8.573
3 99 Jorge LORENZO Yamaha 12.127
4 93 Marc MARQUEZ Honda 27.841
5 4 Andrea DOVIZIOSO Ducati 35.085
6 35 Cal CRUTCHLOW Honda 37.263
7 38 Bradley SMITH Yamaha 37.667
8 21 Katsuyuki NAKASUGA Yamaha 44.654
9 8 Hector BARBERA Ducati 48.572
10 45 Scott REDDING Honda 50.121
11 41 Aleix ESPARGARO Suzuki +1'00.535
12 72 Takumi TAKAHASHI Honda +1'01.211
13 69 Nicky HAYDEN Honda +1'11.261
14 68 Yonny HERNANDEZ Ducati +1'13.896
15 63 Mike DI MEGLIO Ducati +1'15.421
16 19 Alvaro BAUTISTA Aprilia +1'20.507
17 50 Eugene LAVERTY Honda +1'31.224
18 6 Stefan BRADL Aprilia +1'46.833
19 64 Kousuke AKIYOSHI Honda +2'00.072
20 24 Toni ELIAS Yamaha Forward 1 Lap
       
Round Number: 
15
2016
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Comments

I am really pleased to see Dani achieving the results he deserves when he's fit and confident.
It proves that any of the 4 top riders, when nothing is hindering them, can be fighting for victory any race.

It clearly took advantage of the Yamahas racing themselves, and like in Misano .... maybe way too much, destroying the tyres, but nonetheless he rode impeccably.

It was nice to see them discussing grip and the race behind the podium, just before lifting the trophies, like they were not racing one each other but more outside the restaurant after a trip :)

I watched the first couple of laps, but seeing Jorge 3seconds in the lead I went off to do other things - early evening here.

Looked back and saw Dani was coming through but had no idea Jorge has sqwarked his tyre. Jorge must be grumpy...

So great to see a happy Dani Pedrosa.

Feel sorry for Lorenzo, he did what he does best, got the 'hammer down'.

Lorenzo may once more be going into the last round having to slow down to win the championship .

So Lorenzo fail to shake off the "can't do good in wet" demon... That's a relief. Had Lorenzo won today, Internet would've been flaming. Anyway great riding by Dani. Amazing! Rossi putting up no fight whatsoever, as if telling Dani "hey Dani boy... Go get him" and thats exactly what he did.

Now what if Pedrosa wasn't involved? Rossi might have had a lead of 19 points instead of 18 as of now. But thats taking it tooo far. Dani was pulling rossi along with him. So credit to Dani anyway.

Funny enough, Lorenzo won every race in which he was at lead 100% of time. Today he didn't do same for first two corners... And bam! He doesn't win... 18 points cushion... Now rossi can afford to finish right behind Lorenzo in all the races...

Lorenzo rode an amazing first half in the wet, and gapped the so-called rain masters.
Go back and watch the first half again, and then look at the vision of his and Vali's tyres flaying themselves.

Shit, I'm damn certain I'd win every race I led for 100% of the time, too........ :-)

not about how big a gap were u able to get from the guy behind u. At the end of the day, all that Matters is the final outcome.

It depends greatly on your skill to read the conditions well, use it to your own advantage and make it all count in the final outcome. And that is were Lorenzo failed miserably. His blistering first half pace was made to look like a naive mistake in the terrible second half.

Due to the Conditions involved, you can speculate that rossi didn't push too much from the beginning knowing he might come across the same problem as Lorenzo. And this is highly probable because yestersay and today(warm up) rossi had the pace to stay with Lorenzo. So were did it all go in the race? Today gap after 2 3 laps felt almost like a dry race where Lorenzo lead from the beginning, 3.x+ seconds. So it's not that rossi didn't had the pace to stay with Lorenzo, it's just that Vale read the conditions better than Lorenzo. Yes.. I might be giving too much credit to rossi, he might not have thought of this as a tactic. But that doesn't change the fact that Lorenzo read the conditions terribly wrong. And rossi who was at times behind by 3.4+ finished the race seconds ahead of the Lorenzo. So did Lorenzo master riding in rain? Definitely not. He rode a wet race like a dry race and payed the price.

Totally agree. Lorenzo's first half performance was intimidating, and more than a little surprising. But the drying track over cooked his tires and he couldn't hang on to his pace. Had the track stayed as wet as it had been at the start would we have had a different outcome? Maybe.

But that's not what happened, so Lorenzo's strategy failed. Once again, Lorenzo was "faster", but Rossi was smarter.

Now Lorenzo has lost control of his fate. It's not enough for him to beat Rossi, he has to count on Rossi getting stuck behind at least one other rider--or more if they're not battling for the top two spots--which doesn't inspire much hope for him. As Lorenzo's surely remembered by now: they don't call him The Doctor for nothing.

Brilliant ride by Dani(did Jorge mention how lucky Dani was with the rain in Parc ferme?..;-)) great to see him winning again.
A very gallant effort from Jorge but naive on a wet track with no rain? Even my pet parrot Joey knew that it would dry out and the tyres would deteriorate. Though immense for a few laps, he was very lucky to avoid the gravel and end his season prematurely.
On another note as far as I can tell from the analysis Rossi's pace didn't improve after Dani went passed. I think Rossi was only actually right behind him for one corner!
Agree with the Captain I suspect Rossi knew he would pass Jorge also, his pace was brilliant at the end and reduce the potential points gained. Jorge got slower all on his own and Rossi maintained his pace all on is own. Season a long way from over though, what a run in and Dani's resurgence is the icing not cake. :-)

Looked to me like Rossi passed and then gapped him. Not sure of this bad luck "what a pity" that Lorenzo speaks of. They all raced the same track under the same conditions and he lost, be a man accept it and move on. As Bradley Smith so eloquently put it "Luck favors the brave"

I don't know any of these guys personally, so I'm merely a fan of close racing, and let the best man win. But Lorenzo in the post-race press conference?... Let me summarize:
"I'm the fastest in the dry. Now I'm the fastest in the wet. Bad luck is the only reason I'm not dominating this championship."

I'm not even going to weigh in on whether it's true or not; that there's just bad form!

As for the race, I saw this coming by lap three. Does Lorenzo not have somebody on his team watching the Moto2 race for him? Was he not aware of how early in that race the chunks started flying off the front? Then he goes taking off like a bat out of hell while pretty much everyone else ran a similar pace behind. As Nick and Matt were busy calculating Lorenzo's points grab, I'm telling my TV, "Wait until that tire gives up and we have another Argentina on our hands."

That was completely unsustainable pace out the gate, and he comes back to parc fermé saying it was just bad luck that caused his tire to go faster than Dani or Valentino's. No, Jorge, you burned up your tire hunting clear track.

Yep funny comments by Jorge... Smith as well saying should have been 6 th... Good job points are awarded on what is and not what should have been or it would be a bit messy

I think you got it right. Normally he manages a race at the front well. Today, well....not so much. Even the announcers were mentioning that the tires may not last the race before it started (I believe Dylan Gray said that after talking to one of the Bridgestone guys?).

Rossi played it right letting Lorenzo go and not risking too much and also by not trying to fight Dani when he came along.

I'm just curious why the Yamahas were so tough on their front tires here, why they race at tracks with guardrails a meter and a half off the racing line (EsP is a lucky dude) and with the pending switch to Michelin if Lorenzo will ever win another title?

Still a long way to go this season though, maybe I'm wrong......

IMO Lorenzo's principal source of bad luck is that he's competing against a master tactician. On a dry track which suits the Yamaha, he may be the fastest, but he's susceptible to making poor decisions when the track is tricky and tire choice and race strategy are crucial. The commentators also mentioned he kept his winglets, while Rossi dispensed with his.
The pleasure of scampering off into the distance from the start must be intoxicating, but it can turn out to be a mirage by the time the checkered flag gets unfurled - and that's not bad luck.

"...scampering off into the distance from the start..."

Yeah, that NEVER works for him. ;)

As my racing career pre-dates VR's by many years then I demand recognition for being the originator of this tactic....

Whenever anyone would pass me I believed that they would, by the laws of physics or other reason..HAVE..to crash as surely no one could finish at a faster pace than me...

Indeed. Someone needs to tell Jorge he was only the fastest early on because the others knew what may happen to the rubber at that pace. And sure enough.

Sorry Jorge you were only third fastest today.

Rossi (and Pedrosa for that matter) himself admitted he simply couldn't go with Lorenzo in the early stages. There was no concious thought by Rossi (or Pedrosa) to conserve his tyres, if he could have gone with Lorenzo he would have.

As it turns out their comparative lack of pace worked to their advantage, but their own interviews showed there was no tyre conservation strategy as such.

Rossi didn't exactly say it...but Pedrosa sure did. In the post race interview he mentioned getting caught up behind, but then just slowly getting his rhythm going and preserve the tyre for the end of the race.
I also be fairly certain Rossi would have been thinking the same, seeing Lorenzo burn off nearly whole seconds every couple of laps.

If u think rossi didn't think of tyre conservation as a tactic to gain advantage over Lorenzo, I would say u r probably both right and wrong.

As Lorenzo was gaining seconds after seconds, we can clearly see rossi not pushing harder to close that gap. His progression(if any) were down to few one tenth of a second or so. Now did rossi consciously thought of such a disaster for Lorenzo? Maybe not. But the thing is, he is a master tactician with years of valuble experience, he surely might have felt something about his tyres. In a particular situation, all that experience, muscle memories, past rivalries all comes into play. For example rossi might feel very awkward pushing too hard that early in a wet race with no pouring rain. It is purely from experience that he have such a unconscious tactical mind. And I bet... You will never find Lorenzo pushing like this in another race in the same conditions as today. He gained valuble experience today(hard way never the less) and will have that fear of failing tyres next time he race wet. Years of experience is no joke and lorenzo's lack of it was glaring...

and the difference between Rossi and Lorenzo is that Rossi has possessed his "unconscious tactical mind" since 2000, his first ever 500 win! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IWiM2EAux0o

Rossi deserves it; whether he is tactical, tricking, concealing his true thoughts or whatever!

Pedrosa also had major grip problem the first laps. Not enough heat in the rear tire due to his light weight they said. This turned from disadvantage to advantage as the track dried. A smooth style and very little weight carried him through the field. Good for him.
Rossi tried his best to hold Lorenzo but could not, but after a few laps he held a similar speed. I don't think Lorenzo's initial speed took to much away from the tires. The track was all wet and should not be hard on the tires regardless of lap times. But when it dried he did have one thing Rossi didn't have, winglets. They push the front down and that might have given him the edge when wet and the extra load when drying up. Except from that Rossi is heavier and less smooth so I believe the winglets did the job here, not JLo's initial speed.

You can't say others were letting Lorenzo go when he's so fast so frequently, but he clearly wasn't thinking far enough ahead.

Nor are those at the helm of MotoGP. How can they allow this? Guardrails just off the racing line? It's as though they're hoping for a tragedy, as sick as that sounds. Certainly they don't seem desperate to prevent one, and working desperately to prevent a preventable tragedy is one of their jobs.

Heaps of tracks on the calendar are like this. Think of mugello where Marquez came off...these are slightly freak accidents on the straights, they usually don't have big gravel pits running down every wall. Especially along the straights.

I have seen the PEs accident and while he contacted the guard rail it was in a tangencial, parallel way. No fault in track design from my point of view.He didn't get any impact from merely sliding along the guardrail, if I'm not mistaken.

It does not account for guys hitting each other as they often do. Guardrails within a couple meters is just plain wrong. The guardrail is just off the racing line, not like a pit wall where the riders are on the other side of the track.

EsP did that all on his own and lucky in the trajectory he was thrown at the guardrail. Now think of two guys having contact on that line, it could've been much more different an outcome.

Lorenzo is getting pretty annoying with his whinging about this or that. I noticed that he wore a breath protector in his helmet, and his visor was clear the whole race - unlike Silverstone where, unlike every other rider on the grid, he opted to not wear one. Silverstone wasn't luck, it was inferior preparation. Indeed, I'd argue that Lorenzo has been "lucky" that Rossi didn't crack qualifying sooner. If I saw any luck today for Lorenzo, it was of the stupendously good variety: when he didn't crash, inches away from the grass where he almost certainly would have binned it after running wide and hot into that turn.

Of course psychologically what he's doing may be necessary to his style - I think we all have been guilty of this on smaller stages (I do it in "Words with Friends" all the time for example - I am the best at making words! if I have the J, X and Z! and enough vowels! and a K here or there wouldn't hurt!) - but Lorenzo has really elevated it to epic proportions. The fact is that he is not generally any faster than Rossi, although under certain specific conditions he is faster. Lorenzo can't accept that fact, and focuses his mind on the special case. The ultimate problem with this is that he may make himself slower or crash (eventually) by second guessing all of the details.

What an amazing championship this has turned out to be!

BTW, on the winglets...I'm not convinced that they are a very good. There are interesting indeed, but consider the force they provide. When you are straight up and down, they add load to the front tire, especially at high speed, pointing straight down. Exactly like adding more weight to the front of the bike. Maybe this is good for braking at the end of a fast straight and lets you keep a high speed longer - so far so good. But these guys routinely have the big tipped over beyond 45 degrees. That means that a good portion of the time, the winglets are also pushing the bike wide to a greater extent than they are adding vertical load to the front (at 45 degrees, they are pushing sideways in the same magnitude that they are pushing down; at 60 degrees they are pushing sideways 1.7x the magnitude they are pushing down).

Since Jorge isn't a big braking-zone guy anyway...why bother? He's a lean-angle guy.

In cars, the car doesn't roll 60 degrees to either side, so wings make sense. On bikes, I'd like to hear the engineers discuss this one because I'm not sure I buy it.

I'm sure their engineers have thought long and hard about it, and as was said with the Yamaha winglets at Aragon, they just hadn't had any real track time with the real riders to test them. Being that it's not gunna cause a massive accident if it goes wrong, say with a gearbox or an experimental fork setup that might bugger the riders feel.

This type of thing has been done before, many years ago too. Yamaha were keen to point out it might help with keeping more weight on the front end, especially along Aragons straight where the bikes like to get their wiggle on. Being that these things have so much power, I guess it means they find themselves with very little holding the front end down when they are up in 5-6th gear. But when the speeds come down, the forces are going to decrease many-fold, probably doing nothing through most corners.

I'm reminded of the first Tuono model. They added the front screen piece Ti give some front downforce at high speeds, the test riders were complaining of the front end getting light and floaty, certainly not giving any confidence in higher speed sweepers.

It's why I always have to take a step back when I question something like this haha, I know there are teams of clever engineers working year round on this stuff...while I take 5 minutes and I've got my analysis ready to roll, hah!

Totally agree with you cgates.

And I'm sure some will disagree, but here are some facts.

1) Discount Misano where JLo crashed and Rossi is still leading points.
2) Points are awarded for race results, not practice or qualifying.

With these 2 simples facts in mind, it's clear that Rossi is faster than Lorenzo. It's only when the conditions are just right for him (ala Max Biaggi and Luca Cadalora) that Lorenzo makes an advantage.

Now, look back at the days when Doohan, Rainey and Schwantz raced and you will see that if they were not able to manage their bikes when things were not perfect that they would not have become the legends that they are.

Jorge is merely lucky the tires today are as good as they are because in a fight, he is pretty much nowhere.

And that just makes him so much less credible in his comments altogether.

What did I hear though is Rossi being annoyed by Jorge's comments, because he mentioned moving on to the next round and "arriving in front of Jorge", not just following him home. I'm sure that's going to be his goal here soon just as much as not making a mistake today was.

Those wings on lorenzo bike has an impact on his tyre. I think the downforce it created, make lorenzo go forward faster but also degrade the rubber faster on a drying track. I believe the same thing happen to the ducati's as they experimented / copied the yamaha.

As rossi mentioned the reason lorenzo tyre degrade faster is due to setup, i believe is due to the experimented wings. Rossi and pedrosa don't have the wings therefore not as fast as lorenzo but degrade the tyre at a slower rate, just honda fare better at that situation.

As for the race itself, I told my girlfriend early on " I think Lore is burning too much tyre trying to show he's the fastest a little too much"

Prophetic words.

Lorenzo IS the fastest no doubt. He's just not the smartest.This one could prove pivotal in the WC.

A bit tooo late don't u think? I really like Dani boy and would be sooo happy to see him become the champion(Dani's interview in faster brought tears to my eyes). But I do believe that it is too late for him now. His salary getting cut down heavily, his body into 30s... But who knows one year... Dani boy might finally do it... Wish his body could stay with him for a complete season... 50 wins... That's like 5 6 championships worth of victories.

How about Rossi wins this year, and then Dani next year?
Share those titles out fairly, and its a Lorenzo/Marquez lockout...

There are soooo many factors at play, but:

There's a chance Dani's arm pump had genuinely handicapped him and that the procedure earlier this year has unleashed previously untapped potential.

There's a chance that his performance over the past two races will be looked back on as the point when Dani Pedrosa realized that the world championship that he so clearly deserves was perhaps not beyond his grasp after all.

There's a chance that HRC will arrive at the beginning of 2016 with the bike best able to manage new tires and new electronics and that it will be a resurgent Dani Pedrosa who finds the edge over his young Repsol teammate, still coming to terms with the fact that even he is only human in the end.

On any given Sunday, there's always a chance, and I for one would love to see Dani get his.

Dani's comment in hitting the apex would hurt even more I guess. It was one of the more profound thoughts from Dani and he really does show his firm grasp on English language. I wouldn't want to spoil it for any one.

The fact of the matter is that tire management is a huge part of racing. If Jorge had managed his tire better at the beginning of the race he would have been right in the thick of it with the others, which he doesn't like. Not saying he can't duel, just saying he prefers clear track. What other tactic does he have? The only rider he cares about at this point is Rossi baring someone getting between them, so what other tactic did he have? Duke it out with Rossi until the tires go off? At which point there is a good chance that Rossi will be more comfortable based on his style and past abilities with worn tires. Jorge played the only card he had given the circumstances and it didn't work out for him.

His comments are not surprising but are a bit childish really. Bad luck? Come on now.

I strongly doubt that Jorges tire wear was anyting but normal at the start of the race. Cold tires, cold and 100% wet track should be exactly what these tires should take for the full 24 laps distance.
Gradually the track got dryer and caused excessive wear but at that time the other riders were at the same pace.
Setup and wings, maybe riding style were most likely Jorges misfortune this tinme.
And that is from a HUGE Rossi fan.

Thus far - best season since 2007. Can't claim to read Rossi's mind - but can't help wondering if he was being cautious or being smart about not frying the front tire right away.

Marquez - played it safe.

Crutchlow - didn't crash!

Dani - totally heroic. Great stuff.

Get rid of the bike cams. We need helmet cams. The look on Lorenzo's face when Dani passed him would have been worth $100.00 to see. The look on his face when Rossi passed him: Priceless.

I understand people getting tired with Jorge’s whining/arrogance, but I believe its just the front he puts up as part of his psychological preparation, the bulletproof belief that through his talent, work and concentration he is capable of beating anyone and if he doesn’t, it is due to “other circumstances”.

From the interviews I heard on Spanish TV (Movistar), Lorenzo was referring to bad luck because the race conditions in Japan were less favourable to him than his rival. I.e. A wet race and additionally changing track conditions as the rain stopped.

I think we need to bear in mind the psychological state that Rossi and Lorenzo have been in and will be carrying into every race now. Although they are both more mature and respectful than in 2008-10, they are each other’s only rival at this point and the psychological battle has begun.

Jorge is behind and he has said before that every race is a final. He knows he has to lead and try to win, and his sheer speed is the best way to intimidate Rossi (if that is at all possible). That is why he keeps repeating that he is 0,5 seconds faster than him in the dry.

Rossi of course knows this is true so he is focused on working through the weekend to give himself maximum chances to make the best of every race.

With only 3 races remaining Jorge is going to do everything possible to make it to Valencia with a shot at the title. Rossi would like to wrap it up beforehand and I believe he will take risks at both PI and Sepang.

What is really bothering Lorenzo of course is that he thinks that Rossi&Galbusera are benefitting from the information sharing in the Yamaha team. He said Forcada and him have a better base set up at each race and that his rivals catch-up come Sunday by looking at his data. When asked he said that the sharing was beneficial for Yamaha and bike development so it made sense, but it is clearly bugging him.

Perhaps this and Rossi following him through QP is what pushed Lorenzo to go all out at the start of the race…

I'd like to understand this set-up complain Lorenzo has suddenly come up with in a little bit more detail. Of course MotoGP bikes seem to have a bajillion little doohickies to adjust, but at the basic level, Rossi runs a very different chassis balance than Lorenzo. Shorter wheelbase, stiffer suspension etc. - probably a little more "nervous", which has plusses and minuses.

So what exactly would he be copying, eh?

I wonder if this "copying" isn't similar to Lorenzo's "bad luck". And if I had better genetics and came from a motorcycling family, I'd be leading the championship this year...

I like watching Lorenzo at full flight, but at some point he needs to learn to nurse his grievances privately.

Even as a Rossi fan I acknowledge that Lorenzo is faster and think he should be cut a little slack after today. What should he do? Publicly say that overall Valentino is better than him? Imagine how frustrated he must be, to know that he should be easily within reach of a third title but somehow things just aren't working out. Of course it's all down to judgement and skill, and maybe if he'd gone a little slower he'd have triumphed today, but equally, he might also have fallen into a head to head with Vale and lucked out. As for post race comments, that's just noise. Jorge has never had the natural charm or subtlety of Valentino.

Ironic though for him to complain about days sharing. Haven't I heard that somewhere before?

is a common item amongst many top athletes (and in other endevours).

Its an unwavering belief that you are the best, and anyhting that messes with that was something else at fault. Makes people appear insufferably arrogant, but extremely common.

Rossi had more of that early on, but winning for multiple years in a row could help drive that. He lost a little with 2006/07, but much more into the Ducati years. I don't think Jorge has yet to go into that sort of space yet. He still seems to have a external factor to point to. My helmet, my tyre, the drying track, the bad front tyre, the....

Never mind his flair for the dramatic, the arm in the sling etc.

In his younger days VR was just as arrogant but his public demonstration of this was usually humorous and slightly tongue in cheek, gaining rather than losing him fans. Everyone loves a clown, and a clown that wins is priceless. Think Ile Nastasi in tennis, if you're old enough, or Muhammed Ali. But the arrogance was always there. What changed all that was the Ducati years. We've had a far more humble Rossi since, even all the way through this season, and yesterday was the the first time I've seen him, in parc ferme, with that old "top dog" glint in his eye.

I'm old enough to remember MV Agusta experimenting with winglets at one of the faster tracks (Spa? Hockenheim? Monza?) in the mid-seventies. Haven't been able to find a picture though. Any other old timer out there remembers this?

What Jorge said was that over most of the year he has arrived at each track with a better base set up which has allowed him to be fast since friday practice. He states that Rossi has managed to sort everything out by Sundays by looking at his data, thus hinting that without the data sharing Rossi would have struggled to be as competitive on race days.
He also said that, although it could prove negative to him right now, he believed it is a beneficial practice for Yamaha bike development.