Lorenzo Battles for Laguna Victory
World Champion Jorge Lorenzo put in a superhuman effort today for the Grand Prix of U.S.A, battling for victory with Championship rival Casey Stoner to finish second on the podium. Lorenzo made a strong start from pole and led the GP field for an impressive 26 lap run before conceding to Stoner as the effects of yesterday’s massive crash took its toll on his energy levels.
Fellow Yamaha Factory Racing rider Ben Spies had a less than perfect start from the grid, initially dropping to seventh behind Valentino Rossi on the first laps of the race. Rossi was eventually dispatched by the Texan on lap three, freeing him to focus on Dovizioso ahead. Spies put in an incredible ride to close a gap of over five seconds and take fourth with just three laps to go.
The weekend’s results leave Lorenzo heading into the short holiday break trailing Championship leader Stoner by 20 points. Team mate Spies will arrive at Brno still in sixth place in the standings but now just 12 points behind Dani Pedrosa in fourth.
Second is ok, we are only 20 points behind Casey and we’ll try again next time.
“Well first of all I’m lucky to be in the second position, after the crash yesterday I thought it wasn’t possible to race for a little while. After qualifying I hoped I might be able to fight till the end for victory but sometimes expectations are not reality. Casey was faster today, I couldn’t match his pace at the end. My physical condition is not so perfect which makes us a bit slow as well. Second is ok, we are only 20 points behind Casey and we’ll try again next time.”
“I got a really good start but going uphill to the steep part of the track basically we didn’t have enough power. I got stuck behind Valentino, I tried to get around as quick as I could but he’s really good on the brakes so it was pretty tough but I did the best I could. Once we got around him it was quite a big gap to Dovizioso but I just kept my head down and kept going. I’m happy we were able to track him down and get fourth. It was a really good race for us it just got spoilt in the first five hundred feet. I would have liked to have been on the podium as I think we had a package to fight with Dani, I guess that’s racing and I gave it 100% as always.”
“A spectacular race by Jorge with a great 20 points secured. It is obvious we wanted to win this one but I think yesterday’s crash gave us not the best physical condition for a 32 lap race. At the end of the day, to take 20 points after a crash like that is not so bad. We’ll take some rest now and head to Brno recovered and in fighting form ready to challenge Casey again.”
“We leave here with some good points; second position is the best that Jorge could achieve considering his condition, which is very important for the Championship. Unfortunately Ben lost too much time behind Valentino, then when he was able to pass him there was already a big gap to the front guys. He did really well and caught Dovizioso to finish fourth which is good for him and for his standings. We’re looking forward to the next one already in Brno, the team have worked really hard this weekend and it’s been a special time to celebrate our 50th anniversary of Grand Prix racing with everybody here at Laguna.”