The final race of the 2009 MotoGP season had some surprises in store, with the first one occurring before the race even began. Ducati Marlboro’s Casey Stoner inexplicably highsided in the third corner on the warm-up lap, damaging his Desmosedici too heavily to continue; his fourth non-start of the season not only meant that Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa was assured of third place in the championship, but also that Fiat Yamaha’s Jorge Lorenzo could race without having to worry about his second place being threatened as well.
Not so surprising was Spanish homeboy Pedrosa rocketing off the start and immediately holeshotting the rest of the field, turning a series of quick laps that swiftly gapped the chasing pack as the race went on. Lorenzo and teammate Valentino Rossi quickly moved past a quick-starting Toni Elias and engaged in their own little battle as they tried to chase down the fleeing Pedrosa. Lorenzo almost had a highside of his own on the third lap exiting the tight right-hand hairpin in Valencia’s infield, and even though he managed to save it, Rossi immediately took advantage to swoop past. The newly-crowned MotoGP World Champion tried his best to cut into Pedrosa’s lead, but the Spaniard was intent on winning his home Grand Prix and kept Rossi at a comfortable distance.
Monster Tech 3 Yamaha’s Colin Edwards solidified his fifth place (and top non-factory rider status) in the championship with a well-earned fourth place finish, with Stoner’s Ducati teammate Nicky Hayden following a couple of seconds back. Helping Edwards’ cause was his future teammate on the Monster Tech 3 Yamaha squad, wildcard rider Ben Spies, who moved past Pedrosa’s Repsol Honda teammate Andrea Dovisioso for seventh, allowing Edwards to gain that extra point to secure his title ranking.
1. Dani Pedrosa (SPA) Honda
2. Valentino Rossi (ITA) Yamaha
3. Jorge Lorenzo (SPA) Yamaha
4. Colin Edwards (USA) Yamaha
5. Nicky Hayden (USA) Ducati
6. Toni Elias (SPA) Honda
7. Ben Spies (USA) Yamaha
8. Andrea Dovisioso (ITA) Honda
9. Mika Kallio (FIN) Ducati
10. Alex De Angelis (RSM) Honda