Excellent Podium For Pedrosa Repsol Honda's Dani Pedrosa followed up his win in America two weeks ago with an excellent podium finish in the German Grand Prix today. The 23-year-old Spaniard blasted from eighth on the grid to second at the ...
Excellent Podium For Pedrosa
Repsol Honda's Dani Pedrosa followed up his win in America two weeks ago with an excellent podium finish in the German Grand Prix today. The 23-year-old Spaniard blasted from eighth on the grid to second at the first corner and was threatening eventual winner Valentino Rossi in the first few laps.
After a big slide in the middle section of the race Pedrosa reduced his pace, dropped back to fourth and it looked like his podium challenge might be over. But sensing an improvement in feedback, Pedrosa was able to attack again, retake Casey Stoner for third and close in on the back of the leaders. He set a new lap record of 1m 21.126 on lap 25, beating his own lap record from 2007 by almost a second, but couldn't quite mount a challenge to second place man Jorge Lorenzo and Rossi ahead of him. Pedrosa crossed the line in third position just 2.899s behind the winner to record his fifth podium of the 2009 MotoGP season.
Andrea Dovizioso also looked like a podium contender early in the race, despite starting from the fourth row of the grid. The genial Italian rider shot from 11th to fifth on the first lap and overtook Lorenzo for fourth on lap three. Soon though he experienced a loss of grip from the front of his machine which meant it was impossible for the former world champion to continue at his impressive pace. Eventually, having dropped back to 11th, Dovizioso was forced to pull into the pits. His team together with Bridgestone's tyre technicians will analyze the reason for the loss of grip.
Having passed its midway point, the MotoGP world championship now hops to Donington Park for the British Grand Prix, which takes place next Sunday at the unusual time of 15.30.
DANI PEDROSA -- 3rd -- World Championship position: 4th 108 points
"I'm pleased to be on the podium, and finishing this close to the leaders proves that our win at the last race wasn't by chance. I made a very good start and in the first few laps I was comfortable behind Valentino. On about lap six or seven though I had a big moment in the last corner and almost crashed, so after that I slowed down a little and dropped back to fourth. With a slightly slower pace I felt the feedback coming back and towards the end of the race I was able to push hard again. I got past Casey and tried to catch the leaders but by this time I was a bit too far behind. Third place is a good result, but we were ready to fight for the win at this circuit so it looks like we still have a little bit of work to do. The team is in good shape though and we're making progress all the time, so I'm confident we can continue to challenge for better results and preferably for wins. Donington is next and I'm looking forward to it. Let's hope we can have an even better race there."
ANDREA DOVIZIOSO -- Retired -- World Championship position: 7th 69 points
"We needed a strong result here and at the start of the race I was able to ride at a really good pace. I made a quick start from the fourth row and got past six riders on the first lap - then I was able to get past Lorenzo for fourth on the third lap. On that lap I did a 1m 22.7s but then, during the fourth lap, the front folded at turn eight and I ran wide. Within a few laps after this the performance from the front had dropped dramatically. It meant I couldn't lean the bike or brake as normal so it was very difficult to control the bike. From then on my target was to finish the race but with five laps to go I had an electrical issue with the machine and I had to pull in. Obviously I'm really disappointed with the result because I was feeling fast here and I had a very good feeling from the bike. We really had the potential for a good result here, which is what we need at this moment. Still, now we'll go to Donington next weekend and aim for the level of result we're capable of."
KAZUHIKO YAMANO - REPSOL HONDA TEAM MANAGER
"This was another strong ride from Dani and his pace was almost enough to challenge for the win today. It was a fighting performance from him and it's good to see him on the podium for the second race in succession. Obviously we'd prefer to have a Repsol Honda rider on the top step and that's what we'll keep working for. We've been improving and we must continue to do so. For Andrea the result was obviously disappointing because he too had a good race pace in the early stages. We'll have to look into the reasons for his front end problem today and I'm sure he can bounce back with a strong result at Donington."