SHOWMAN SIMONCELLI IN THE SPOTLIGHT AGAIN
After qualifying on the front row Marco Simoncelli was entitled to hope for better than a sixth place finish but the Team San Carlo Honda Gresini was satisfied with his performance after a gritty fight in the lead group at the last race of the season in Valencia. It is difficult to say whether the wrong tyre choice cost him a better position but after setting an impressive pace on the hard compound yesterday maybe the decision to stick with them today instead of switching to the softs was an expensive one for Marco. However, an impressive performance from "Super Sic" and his team over the whole weekend augurs well for next season, which gets underway with the first winter test session this Tuesday here at Valencia.
Marco Simoncelli (6th) "I was hoping for a better result than this to be honest but I am still satisfied because I gave it my best shot. I struggled a little bit to set the same lap times as yesterday and stay with the front guys. I was losing the rear in a few places and maybe with the conditions today we should have gone with the soft tyre. Evren though it had less grip yesterday I felt more confident with the hard so we stuck with it because I thought it would help me stay consistent to the end of the race but it was sliding around a lot. In any case I kept going and I am happy with my performance."
Marco Melandri (13o.) "I don't want to talk about the race. I would rather look to the future because I think we have seen today that the right choice right now for me is to end this story and start a new one. Having said that it has been a big part of my life and I am the person I am today partly because of MotoGP. I want to thank all the people who have stayed close to me and also those who have been against me because they have helped me to grow. Thanks to all the sponsors who have accompanied me over these years and everybody who has worked with me, my family and my fans, who I will see again next year in another championship."
Fausto Gresini "It wasn't an easy final Grand Prix of the season but I think that Simoncelli had a good race. Obviously after the third place yesterday we were hoping for a little more today but he showed once again that he can ride this bike and he is improving a lot. In the future I want to see a lot more of the "Super Sic" we saw today, which is a great launchpad for next year. I am really sorry for Melandri, for the race today and for the whole season and as much as I love Marco I hate to see him like this. We have tried to do everything possible to put him in the right shape to do well but together we couldn't do it and I am disappointed. I wish him all the best in his new adventure and I hope he can get the results we weren't able to achieve together this year. In Superbike he will have one more fan supporting him: me."
-source: gresini racing