Nicky Hayden (Repsol Honda Team RC211V-Michelin) won today's action-packed Dutch TT after a tense duel with fellow Michelin rider Colin Edwards (Camel Yamaha Team YZR-M1- Michelin). The pair were side by side and on the dirt as they swept through...
Nicky Hayden (Repsol Honda Team RC211V-Michelin) won today's action-packed Dutch TT after a tense duel with fellow Michelin rider Colin Edwards (Camel Yamaha Team YZR-M1- Michelin). The pair were side by side and on the dirt as they swept through the final chicane, Edwards just ahead but then tumbling from his M1 to hand victory to Hayden. Edwards remounted to finish 13th, while Hayden's first win of 2006 extends his World Championship lead to 42 points over Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team RC211V-Michelin) who won a three-way battle for third place with Casey Stoner (Honda LCR RC211V-Michelin) and Kenny Roberts Junior (Team Roberts KR211V-Michelin).
Michelin riders filled six of the top eight finishing positions, eighth place going to Valentino Rossi (Camel Yamaha Team YZR-M1-Michelin) who raced despite fracturing a bone in his right wrist when he crashed heavily during Thursday morning practice. Rossi wasn't the only rider who rode a heroic Dutch TT against the odds, Marco Melandri (Fortuna Honda RC211V-Michelin) taking seventh place, Marco and Loris Capirossi (Ducati Marlboro Team Desmosedici), still hurting from the injuries they sustained in last Sunday's big turn-one crash at the Catalan GP. "Both Colin and Nicky rode well today, they both deserved the win," said Nicolas Goubert, Michelin's director of motorcycle racing. "We are quite happy with the way our tyres worked because they gave consistently good performance. Nicky got the fastest lap on lap four but Colin set his best lap on lap 20, and, looking at his section times, he could have been even faster on his last lap. It was a brilliant result for Nicky. Valentino and Marco also deserve praise for their brave rides in difficult circumstances. The battle for the last podium place was impressive too, Pedrosa, Stoner and Roberts finishing within half a second.
"Nicky and Colin chose totally different tyres for the race, according to their bikes and riding styles. Different needs mean different tyres, which makes the racing interesting from a tyre point of view. Colin chose a soft rear and he was confident because he had done race distance in practice with that tyre. Nicky went for something harder than he had used yesterday because it was hotter today and he wanted something for a strong finish. Both choices seemed equally good. They used different fronts too, Nicky using our bigger-profile front in a hard compound, Colin choosing the latest evolution of our narrower front in quite a soft compound."