Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa rediscovered the form that netted him seven wins last season to take a dominant victory in the Spanish Grand Prix at Jerez.
After getting the holeshot at the start of the race to lead into the first corner, Pedrosa was overtaken by Yamaha Factory Racing’s Jorge Lorenzo on the first lap who set a fierce pace in the opening stages of the contest, setting a new race lap record of 1’39.565 on lap two.
Pedrosa managed to regain the race lead from Lorenzo on lap six before pulling away to take the chequered flag by 2.487 seconds.
The first of the CRT finishers at Jerez was Power Electronics Aspar’s Aleix Espargaro, who capped off a strong showing in Spain by claiming ninth position.
Strong sunshine and ambient temperatures approaching the thirty degree Celsius mark combined to create challenging track conditions today. A peak track temperature of 53°C was recorded during the race – the same figure reached yesterday afternoon – and correspondingly, race tyre choice was similar to that seen in qualifying.
Front tyre choice for the race was uniform across the whole grid with all riders selecting the harder of the two front slick tyre options, the medium compound for the race. All the riders also selected the softer of the rear slick options available to them, with CRT riders selecting the extra-soft compound symmetric rear slick and the riders on works machines selecting the soft compound symmetric rear slick.
Pedrosa’s victory sees him move into second place in the MotoGP championship standings on fifty-eight points, while Marquez moves to the overall points lead with sixty-one points. Lorenzo sits one point behind Pedrosa in third position.
Yuichiro Takenami – Vice President and Senior Officer, Corporate Communications and Motorsport: “Congratulations to Dani Pedrosa on taking his first win of the season today in front of a large and passionate Spanish crowd. The contest between Marc and Jorge for second place was special to behold and the intense level of competition in MotoGP at the moment is resulting in some fantastic races.
Bridgestone is proud to be part of such an exciting series and with such a depth of talent in the championship and the inclusion of exciting new rookies such as Marquez, I am sure we will continue to see large crowds of people flocking to racetracks throughout the season.”
Shinichi Yamashita – General Manager, Bridgestone Motorsport Tyre Development Department: “This weekend presented a big challenge to the riders with the hottest track conditions seen in Jerez in recent times, so our technical team worked diligently to ensure the teams could get the most out of the tyres on the scorching asphalt.
I am pleased that even though track temperatures were substantially higher than we had in the pre-season test six weeks ago, a new race lap record was set and riders could lap at a consistent pace throughout the twenty-seven lap race.
The extreme temperatures also provided lots of useful data on tyre performance at this circuit, which we will take into consideration for our ongoing tyre development programme.”
Dani Pedrosa, Repsol Honda – Race Winner: “To win today feels amazing and obviously for the championship this victory is also good. It was a smart race from me, I had to push every lap while also taking care of the tyres, but the bike was working well and towards the end I could manage the gap. It’s an amazing feeling to be here and thanks to my team, we now have a test tomorrow so there is still some hard work to do.”