Repsol Honda Team
At the Grand Prix of Catalunya today, Dani Pedrosa scored a strong second place in front of 79,351 spectators, and after 19 successive podium visits, teammate Casey Stoner missed out by less than two tenths of a second and finished 4th.
It was Pedrosa’s fourth podium of 2012, the eighth in Montmeló and came as a relief after missing his home race last year due to injury. Starting from fifth place on the grid, Pedrosa made one of his stunning starts to take the lead by the first corner and set a high pace from the beginning to fight with Jorge Lorenzo until the closing laps.
Stoner, who has won the previous four races held in Spain, finished fourth after a big battle holding off Cal Crutchlow behind him and missed out on third place to Dovizioso by a very small margin. The World Champion maintains second place in the championship standings, now 20 points behind Lorenzo, whilst Pedrosa keeps third, 10 points less than Casey.
"A second place is always a second, but I really wanted to win today, I cannot feel happy. We've worked very hard during the practice sessions to be ready to win but finally we couldn't make it, so it's a little bit disappointing. I pushed as much as I could but in the final laps I had some issues to stay on the racing line. I pushed my best in the middle of the race, I tried to attack but with 10 laps remaining I couldn't keep the pace, it was hard to control the bike on braking and in the exit of the corners, so I was defensive because I knew my corner speed was not so good. I made a mistake and I had a big wheelie, so Jorge got past me and I couldn't follow him. We cannot be happy today, but I have to congratulate my team because they worked very hard this weekend and we have to keep pushing for the next races to start winning soon."
"I'm a little disappointed, we gave it everything at the end but we just didn't have the pace, especially in the beginning with the hard tyre. It seemed that only Dani could really make that tyre work today and he made it work better than us. With the performance we had during the weekend we expected to be a little stronger throughout the race, we knew the beginning was going to be tough but we believed that towards the end we would be able to run a higher pace. We weren't sure if the softer tyre was going to be a problem for us in the race so we took the safer option today. We thought we had a better bike and better pace, but it didn't come together. Still we came home with some points and we have the test here tomorrow to work on the chatter issues so I'm sure we'll be back fighting at the top again soon."