TT Assen: Fiat Yamaha race report

Lorenzo hoping for more next time after sixth place in Assen Fiat Yamaha rider Jorge Lorenzo took sixth place for the second Grand Prix running in the 60th Dutch TT today, the youngest rider in the class making up one place on his grid position.

Lorenzo hoping for more next time after sixth place in Assen

Fiat Yamaha rider Jorge Lorenzo took sixth place for the second Grand Prix running in the 60th Dutch TT today, the youngest rider in the class making up one place on his grid position. His team-mate Valentino Rossi made an uncharacteristic mistake and crashed out on the first lap, although he was able to remount and finish in 11th to take valuable championship points. Yamaha's record of having at least one rider on the podium at every race so far this season was kept alive by Tech 3 pilot Colin Edwards, who took third.

Lorenzo held onto his seventh grid slot at the start but he was unable to find his rhythm and go with the leading riders, gradually tailing off on his own. On lap ten Edwards passed him on his charge through the field and Lorenzo spent the middle part of the race a lonely eighth. In the later stages he began to feel more confident in his Michelin-shod bike and his lap times improved, enabling him to catch first Chris Vermeulen and then Shinya Nakano to take sixth.

Ten points for the Spaniard today means he holds onto fourth place in the championship but the gap to Casey Stoner, today's winner, is stretched to 28 points.

Jorge Lorenzo - Position: 6th Time: +28.608

"I said yesterday that the most important thing for me today was to finish after everything that's happened recently, so this is a good thing. However I am not happy about the race because it wasn't fun today and I had some problems, although, as in the last few races, my bike became easier to ride towards the end of the race. I must just take comfort now in the fact that we have two weeks until the next round, and hopefully by then I will be feeling a lot better. We are trying to go step-by-step but of course I want to do better than this. Valentino was not so lucky today but I want to say well done to him for finishing and taking some important points."

Daniele Romagnoli - Team Manager

"It has been a difficult race weekend for us, we weren't able to find a good race pace in the practices and today Jorge wasn't able to fight for the top positions. We have some problems on the rear and the bike is very nervous under acceleration. The team have worked very hard to improve it but we still have some more work to do. Overall however we are quite happy because our aim for these two races was to finish without any more crashes, and we have been able to do this. We are confident that in Sachsenring we will be able to be back in the fight."

Rossi battles on after crash to take valuable title points

A rare mistake from Valentino Rossi resulted in a first-lap crash for the Fiat Yamaha Team rider today, but he remounted and made up a gap of more than 20 seconds to pass two riders and finish in 11th place, despite riding with a broken gear-shifter and a bent handlebar. His team-mate Jorge Lorenzo rallied in the later stages of a difficult race to finish sixth, whilst Tech 3 rider Colin Edwards kept the Yamaha flag flying on the podium by taking third.

Rossi had slipped back some places when he made his mistake at turn five and slid into the gravel, unfortunately taking Randy de Puniet with him. Points were still a possibility however and he re-joined the race, despite the damage to his bike and a gap of 24 seconds to Marco Melandri, the next rider. He then embarked on a heroic ride, consistently lapping as fast as the leading riders and closing the gap lap by lap until he finally came within sight of Melandri, eventually passing him on lap 19 of 26.Four laps later he passed Toni Elias to take 11th and five championship points, finishing 46 seconds behind race-winner Casey Stoner.

With Rossi's closest championship rival Dani Pedrosa finishing second, his gutsy ride could prove crucial in the championship race. The Italian's first non-podium finish since the opening race of the season means he has surrendered his title lead to Pedrosa but he is adrift by only four points, the pair on 171 and 167 respectively.

Valentino Rossi - Position: 11th Time: +46.025

"After seven podiums in a row I made a mistake today - this is racing! I am very disappointed because we made a change to the set-up of the front and it worked very well, and I could tell from the warm-up lap that my bike was very good today. Unfortunately I made a mistake at the first left; I arrived too fast when the tyres were still cold, I was too hard on the brakes and I lost the rear. I am sincerely sorry to Randy de Puniet and all of his team. After the crash I had a bent handlebar and no gear shifter, but despite this I was able to do the third fastest lap time, 37.1! I know I could have been faster than Pedrosa today and, although it's easy to say now, I think I could have fought with Stoner for the win. I am glad for these five points and although we have lost the lead we are not far behind Pedrosa. I am looking forward now to some more technical improvements for my bike and being fast, together with Bridgestone, at every track."

Davide Brivio - Team Manager

"This was a good race for Valentino, except for the first lap! The crash was unfortunate and we're very sorry to Randy de Puniet and the LCR team; we apologise to them all and we hope that Randy is okay. Once Valentino remounted what he did was simply amazing, especially without a gear-shift and with a bent handlebar! For several laps he was the fastest rider on the track, which shows once again his spirit and determination, although it's also disappointing because it's clear that we could have done a good race today. These five points today are incredibly important because they have kept the gap to Pedrosa to just four points, with half of the season still remaining. Now we will just have to start again in Sachsenring and hope for a better weekend!"

-credit: yamaha-racing.com

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About this article
Series MotoGP
Drivers Valentino Rossi , Colin Edwards , Shinya Nakano , Randy de Puniet , Chris Vermeulen , Marco Melandri , Jorge Lorenzo , Toni Elias , Casey Stoner , Davide Brivio , Dani Pedrosa