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GP Week : Issue 158
at BRIEFLY » Two-strokes forever ... at least when they are powering vintage Vespa scooters. A gang of 14 of them took a week to ride from Italy to Silverstone, in a tribute likely to have amused the late Marco Simoncelli at least as much as the tribute song launched by British band The Rainband. The group brought a Simoncelli helmet, which fetched £2,000 at the auction. » Yamaha celebrated Giacomo Agostini’s 70th birthday with a paddock party on race eve at Silverstone, attended by old rival John Cooper as well as Jim Redman and others. Ago named Mike Hailwood as his greatest rival, and said he would trade all 15 of his titles to be able to race again. Asked about retirement and Stoner’s impending departure, he said: “I thought for two months every day, and when I decided I cried for three days.” Stoner, he thought, must no longer love motorcycles to be able to turn his back on the sport. “It is like your wife ... if you no longer love her, then you must stop.” » Ducati riders Rossi and Hayden had carbon-copy high-speed crashes in the final qualifying session, each tucking the front wheel under hard braking at the end of the final straight. They fell in exactly the same spot and in the same way, their bikes somersaulting to destruction alongside. The cause, they both explained, was a slight crest, and the weighting on the front wheel changed as you passed over it. Neither was seriously hurt. With Marc Marquez and Pol Espargaro’s title positions in doubt pending the outcome of the second appeal against the penalty applied to Marquez at Catalunya. Marquez was docked 60 seconds by Race Control, dropping him out of the points. But an appeal by his CalalunyaCaixa team saw the decision reversed by FIM stewards, reinstating his position. Espargaro’s 40 HP Tuenti team owner Sito Pons then appealed against that decision to the FIM’s disciplinary court, which could take several more weeks to pass judgement. If that supports Race Control, Marquez, who took the championship lead with third place at Silverstone, may be stripped of the 16 points he regained. In this case, a team spokesman said, “we can appeal to the European CAS (Court of Arbitration for Sport).” A decision from this body could take many months, perhaps into next year. If the title margin is small enough, it could alter the final result either way. MOTO2 TITLE MAY NOT BE DECIDED THIS YEAR Fresh appeals in the off ing as teams await verdict 14 GPWEEK.com // PARTNERS: MOTOGP >>> NEWS