Italian GP: Tech 3 race report

Ben Spies battles hard for seventh at majestic Mugello Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team rider Ben Spies got his 2010 world championship campaign firmly back on track with a battling seventh place finish in today's Italian MotoGP race at Mugello. Spies...

Ben Spies battles hard for seventh at majestic Mugello

Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team rider Ben Spies got his 2010 world championship campaign firmly back on track with a battling seventh place finish in today's Italian MotoGP race at Mugello. Spies showed his failure to finish the previous two races had done little to dent his confidence as he made a stunning start from the third row of the grid. The 25-year-old slotted into a brilliant fourth place before he slipped back to seventh in a hectic opening few laps. He briefly moved back into the top six with an overtake on Randy de Puniet on lap six but spent the remainder of the 23-lap encounter giving his maximum effort to try and clos e in on captivating battle for fourth position.

Spies brilliantly hunted down Casey Stoner, de Puniet and Marco Melandri but despite launching a persistent challenge he was never able to get sufficiently close to mount an attack. The Texan's morale-boosting result though moved him back into the top ten in the world championship standings on 20-points with four of the 18 rounds completed.

American team-mate Colin Edwards finished in a brave 13th place despite having to race in extremely difficult circumstances. Edwards suffered a mystery fatigue issue in this morning's warm-up session and it was obvious from the start of the race that his physical condition would prevent him from showing his true potential as he dropped from fifth to 11th. Despite feeling well below his best, Edwards bravely rode to 13th to collect three valuable po ints and preserve his 100 per cent points-scoring record this season.

The Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team now embarks on a new adventure when MotoGP visits the Silverstone circuit in England for the first time since 1986.

Ben Spies - Position: 7th - Time: +28.806

"The goal was top ten, so to be eighth I'm pretty happy with, especially leaving here with solid points after the disappointment of the last two races. I got a great start and felt like I rode as hard as I could and didn't make too many mistakes but I just couldn't quite get up close to the battle in front of me and that was a little frustrating. I found myself right on the tail of that pack with Randy, Marco and Casey but I wasn't going to be able to pass them on the straight. I just tried to stay as close as I could for as long as I could in case something happened with them but everybody kept it upright. I was just hoping that the pack was going to break open and I could pick one of them off but they stayed together. It was a good race and what I needed to build my confidence and experience and now I'm looking forward to Silverstone. That's a level playing field with nobody knowing the track, so I'll have less of a disadvantage."

Colin Edwards - Position: 13th - Time: +1'14.393

"I'm really disappointed and a bit mystified because I've felt good all weekend and we got the bike working really well again after we switched back to the setting we had at Mugello last year. But it was a struggle from the off and I didn't feel great at all. The bike was working well. It goes round the corner good, it brakes good and has good traction but I can't ride in that condition. I felt fatigued really early in the race and was really struggling to change direction with the bike. And at this track you have got a l ot of fast changes of direction that are crucial to help you flow and set good times. I've had a bit of an arm pump issue all weekend for the first time in my career and needed quite a few injections to ease that. But I was way below my best physical condition and not just because of that. All I can do is apologise to Monster Yamaha Tech 3 and I wish I knew what was going on. I'll try and figure it out and be ready to come out fighting strong in Silverstone."

Herve Poncharal - Team Manager

"It was a mixed day for Monster Yamaha Tech 3 because we had high hopes after qualifying. Ben did a great job and it was a shame that he could not really force his way into that exciting fight for fourth place. He did everything he could and he never gave up to show how determined he is to achieve a better result. But I think it was obvious that he had a speed issue on the straight a nd that didn't help him. But it was a race that will be good for his confidence though and he showed that he is capable of easily challenging for the top places. It was a big shame for Colin because it is clear he was not able to ride at his usual level. Colin showed his potential in qualifying with fifth but in the race his physical condition never allowed him to fight at his maximum potential and I feel for him because he too never stop trying to improve his situation. We now look forward to the new challenge of Silverstone hopeful of a positive result."

-source: tech 3

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Series MotoGP
Drivers Colin Edwards , Ben Spies , Randy de Puniet , Marco Melandri , Casey Stoner , Herve Poncharal
Teams Tech 3