Written by Dan Evon, Courtesy of AllAboutBikes.com
For the first time in his MotoGP career, Dani Pedrosa has won three races in a season. Pedrosa was able to beat out a high-flying Ben Spies for the race win at Indy, and cut down Jorge Lorenzo’s lead in the series to 66 points. Pedrosa still has a long way to go if he wants to catch up to the season leader, but with 7 races left to go in the MotoGP season, Pedrosa isn’t giving up on his title hopes just yet.
Pedrosa: “I’m really happy with this win and it was an especially tough one because of the heat today…. My rhythm was good today and even though Spies was strong in front I was able to close him down and make the pass. I’m really pleased with the performance of my bike because it was fast on the straights and also was working well in the corners…. I’m very happy because last year I crashed when I could have won and now I have made up for it… We are doing a good job and I hope we can maintain this momentum next weekend at Misano.”
Rookie Ben Spies had a fantastic weekend in front of the American crowd. Spies started from the pole position, and claimed his best result yet in his fledgling MotoGP career, with a second place finish at Indy.
Spies: “I’m really happy to have got my best result in MotoGP in front of the American crowd and at a track as famous as Indianapolis. I always said I wanted my best result in my home race, so it’s mission accomplished. After the pole position I got a great start and it felt good to be out front for the first time in MotoGP. But I didn’t have the pace for Dani today and he rode a great race… When Dani passed me I knew I couldn’t follow him, so I let him go and concentrated on keeping a gap to Jorge in third and that’s what I achieved. I can’t complain because it was a great weekend and to be top Yamaha rider when you look at who else is on that bike is pretty satisfying. It hasn’t sunk in yet that I’ve finished second in my home race. But I’ll enjoy it before I hop on a plane and try and do it again in Misano next weekend.”
Jorge Lorenzo had his worst finish of the MotoGP season, which is amazing since it was a third place finish. Lorenzo’s streak of 1-2 finishes ended last weekend at Indy, but he has still finished on the podium at every race this year. Lorenzo has a 66 point lead ahead of Pedrosa, and if he can manage to stay on the track for the remaining 7 races, he should be able to hoist the MotoGP championship trophy at the end of the year.
Lorenzo: “Of course I shouldn’t be disappointed with third place but at the same time I’m not happy with my race today, I didn’t ride as well as I could have and I didn’t get a good start. The conditions were incredibly hard and I simply didn’t have the physical strength to push as hard or do the same times I did in practice; it was like a race in Malaysia! The track was so slippery and it was very difficult to use the tires as you wanted to, I think honestly I’m quite lucky to have finished third today. The good thing is we took some points and now I have to concentrate on recovering before Misano because we don’t have much time.”
Valentino Rossi continues to improve, but still isn’t in the condition he was before his accident. The reigning champion took fourth place at Indy, and now sits in fifth place in the overall standings. Rossi is just 5 points behind Casey Stoner, but he’ll have to watch out for Ben Spies and Nicky Hayden, who are both nipping at his wheels.
If Rossi is going to find his way back to the top of the podium this season, he’ll be likely to do it next weekend at Misano, where he will race in front of his home crowd.
Rossi: “This was a good race for us after the weekend. Fourth is quite good in the circumstances but the important thing is that my rhythm in the race was strong and I felt much happier on the bike. I did some good laps and I wasn’t too far from the other Yamahas, but unfortunately I paid a lot for my lack of fitness in this heat and in the end I had to stop pushing because I didn’t have any strength left in my body. I’m happy though because we came back to a good setting and with me riding well, and if you consider I had three small crashes in the weekend, fourth isn’t so bad. Now we will look forward to Misano, my home race!”