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GP Week : Issue 56
Shuffling the pack Dovi wins as the contenders have a bad day THE last MotoGP race at Donington Park was as unexpected as sunny weather at the English track. With intermittent drizzle and lap times varying wildly, the three main men of the championship all found one or another way to fall victim. And the result was a first premier class victory for Repsol Honda’s newest rider Andrea Dovizioso, with unusual satelliteteam podium companions: Colin Edwards (Monster Tech 3 Yamaha) and Randy de Puniet (LCR Honda). Casey Stoner and Marlboro Ducati team- mate Nicky Hayden were ruled out from the off: the team opting to gamble on full wet tyres. It was a disastrous decision; they finished 14th and 15th, after being lapped by the leaders before half distance. Toni Elias (San Carlo Honda) was the early leader, Lorenzo and Rossi following along. On lap three both Yamahas came by, and on the same lap, Dovizioso shot past all three to lead for the first time. Lorenzo took over on lap five, Pedrosa moving into second next time round. Elias was at the back of the group when he became the first victim of a wet white line, sliding out on lap eight. Lorenzo was looking to break away over the next two laps. Until he also touched a white line, under braking for the final hairpin. He was down in a flash. “My mistake,” he admitted. This handed the lead to Rossi, with Dovi right with him. Pedrosa had already survived a big scare and was dropping back. The pair carried on in close formation, Dovi happy to let Rossi seek out the slippery bits. “With a smoked visor, you couldn’t see the wet patches,” he said. They went on like this to the 20th lap. And Pos 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 Not classified J. LORENZO T. ELIAS Fiat Yamaha Team San Carlo Honda Gresini 22 Lap 23 Lap Points – MotoGP: Rossi 187, Lorenzo 162, Stoner 150, Pedrosa 115, Edwards 103, Dovizioso 94, Melandri 79, De Puniet 74, Vermeulen 67, Capirossi 56 Points – 250cc: Aoyama 159, Bautista 144, Simoncelli 115, Barbera 114, Pasini 80, Debon 73, Luthi 67, De Rosa 67, Faubel 65, Locatelli 56, Di Meglio 43 3 Points – 125cc: Simon 154, Gadea 104, Smith 98.5, Terol 94.5, Iannone 93.5, Espargaro 68.5, Marquez 56, Cortese 55, Folger 54, Redding 44.5 MOTOGP | Round 10 DOnInGTOn Rider Team A. DOVIZIOSO C. EDWARDS R. DE PUNIET A. DE ANGELIS V. ROSSI J. TOSELAND M. MELANDRI N. CANEPA D. PEDROSA M. KALLIO L. CAPIROSSI G. TALMACSI C. VERMEULEN C. STONER N. HAYDEN Repsol Honda Team Monster Yamaha Tech 3 LCR Honda MotoGP San Carlo Honda Gresini Fiat Yamaha Team Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Hayate Racing Team Pramac Racing Repsol Honda Team Pramac Racing Rizla Suzuki MotoGP Scot Racing Team MotoGP Rizla Suzuki MotoGP Ducati Marlboro Team Ducati Marlboro Team then suddenly Rossi was down entering the chicane. “Incredibly it was on the dryer part of the track. My mistake was to lean a little bit more, and the left side of the tyre was cold because all the long left-handers were wet,” he explained. With typical luck, his bike was undamaged. Now Dovizioso was alone, facing “really difficult conditions” without a guide. Rain was coming and going, the lap times varying madly. And though he had a lead of almost 10 seconds over de Puniet, before much longer it started to shrink. As they finished lap 27 it was less than 1.5 seconds. There was now another complication. Edwards had started slowly, “wondering where the hell the other guys were going” as he battled to adjust to a soft front tyre he Time 48'26.267 + 1.360 + 1.600 + 8.958 + 21.622 + 22.465 + 35.284 + 38.769 + 42.112 + 45.845 + 53.190 + 1'12.315 + 1'20.398 1 Lap 1 Lap