Rossi rebounded from his Indy debacle by dominating the MotoGP weekend at Misano, extending his championship point lead to 30 points with four races remaining.
Lorenzo couldn't get past Pedrosa as quickly as Rossi, but it didn't matter much, as Rossi kept his teammate at bay every time he tried to mount a charge.
Pedrosa got off to his usual quick start and led the first few laps at Misano, but he couldn't hold off the advances of the Fiat Yamaha pair and finished third.
Colin Edwards is hitting the deck as his bike hits Nicky Hayden and takes the Ducati rider as well. Alex De Angelis (hidden) tried to make an impossible move and crashed into Edwards, triggering the pileup.
Valentino Rossi once again demonstrated his mastery of the Misano circuit in Italy by being cautious in the beginning of the race with a full tank of fuel, then quickly working his way to the front and maintaining that lead to prevent any challenge by Fiat Yamaha teammate Jorge Lorenzo for the victory. Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa was the early leader, but couldn’t hold off the advances of the Yamaha pair and finished third, although Lorenzo’s inability to get past the Honda rider as quickly as Rossi definitely had a role in the race’s outcome. Rizla Suzuki’s Loris Capirossi lost out on a race-long battle with Pedrosa’s teammate Andrea Dovisioso for fourth.
“It was the perfect weekend,” said Rossi, clearly basking in the victory. “We were first in practice and especially the race. I’m so happy because we rebounded well after Indianapolis, me, the team, we found a good setting and we dominated the whole weekend. So we deserve this victory and the 25 points, plus I’m so happy to win in front of this crowd, it makes me very proud.” Rossi wasn’t about to drop his guard regarding the championship, however. “30 points is a good advantage, but as you saw in Indy, it can all go bad in one second. We have to stay focused, work hard as we did this weekend, and if we can’t win, take what points we can.” The jovial Italian poked more fun at his helmet’s “donkey” motif. “Today, I guess I am the ‘Flying Donkey’!”
“After the morning warmup, I knew it was going to be a difficult race when we saw how fast Valentino was,” admitted Lorenzo, before mentioning a near-miss in the second corner. “But I didn’t get that bad of a start, although I almost crashed in the second corner because De Angelis came into the corner too hot and hit me, but I didn’t crash. After that incident, I wanted to relax a bit to recover and not take too many risks. I think today was the day to finish second and not to win, because Vale had the best pace all weekend. So I had to concentrate on getting second place because I didn’t have the perfect set-up for my bike and I couldn’t brake very late. Because of that, it was difficult to get around Dani (Pedrosa), as the Honda accelerates off the corner very well. Anyway, second place is good.”
Pedrosa knew he didn’t have the pace of the Fiat Yamaha pair, and did what he could to finish on the podium. “I gave it my maximum in the race,” said the Spaniard, who signed a one-year extension to his contract for 2010 with Repsol Honda. “I tried to do everything I could and I wanted to stay with them (Rossi and Lorenzo) at the beginning, but in the middle of the race I started to go slower and they were just faster. They were braking better and cornering better, so I couldn’t keep up with them.” Pedrosa had to be brought back to the pits on the cool-off lap by fellow Spaniard Toni Elías after his machine stopped running. Pedrosa commented, “From the beginning I had some misfiring on a couple of corners and in the end I was very lucky because my bike stopped on the ‘in-lap’ and it was very strange. I don’t know if it was lack of fuel or something else, but I think I was lucky to finish the race and get third!
The race for Monster Tech 3 Yamaha’s Colin Edwards and Ducati Marlboro’s Nicky Hayden lasted all of two turns, as they were taken out by an over-exuberant Alex De Angelis when he tried to make an impossible maneuver on his San Marco Gresini Honda, putting all three riders on the ground. It was a cruel blow for both American riders, who had shown excellent potential during both qualifying and the morning warmup, but especially for Edwards, who lost a chunk of points to Dovisioso in their battle for fifth spot in the championship.
Edwards was his typical candid self when asked about the incident. “I don’t know man, I wasn’t really involved with it, apart from ending up on my ass sliding on the ground,” commented the straightforward Texan. “I dunno…we’re in Italy, and occasionally we get some dumbass Italian who decides to do something heroic in turn one...and from there, it all went pear-shaped…I thought I had the pace to easily be fourth and maybe fight with Pedrosa for a podium. Turn one at the start with 17 bikes isn’t the place to be a hero, and he was never going to make it through there. He’s the guy who needed to be wearing Valentino's donkey helmet today. Turn one is the most dangerous time to crash with so many bikes around you.” Edwards was clearly disappointed to be losing ground to Dovisioso. “I've been fighting with (Repsol Honda’s Andrea) Dovizioso in the championship most of the season, and now he has ten points on me with four races to go (because of De Angelis’ mistake). That's racing, I guess.”
“I saw somebody out of the corner of my eye, De Angelis, I saw his fruity rainbow-colored helmet just comin’ way too fast into the corner and I thought ‘this isn’t going to work’, so I just gassed it,” recalled a similarly disappointed Hayden. “I thought I’d got away from him, because the first two turns here are really tight, and last year the same thing happened with De Puniet and Pedrosa, and I picked the bike up and ran straight; this time I thought I’d cleared it and leaned the bike back into the corner, and then felt something pulling the bike down…just really frustrating. This weekend was by far the fastest I’ve been on race tires; this morning, I was third, fourth the whole session, and I felt really good on a quite used front tire. We had a really good setup, we could’ve had a real good result today. I know it’s easy to say that now, but I’m just bummed out. We could’ve had a really good result, I think I could’ve had a really fun, enjoyable race and…enjoy myself today. I know in racing people can make mistakes and I have done plenty in my life but I'm not happy with Alex because this wasn't racing. It was just stupid to try and pull a move like that on cold tires, in the second corner on the first lap. But I’m OK, completely 100% OK, so we’ll be back.”
- 1. Valentino Rossi (ITA) Yamaha
- 2. Jorge Lorenzo (SPA) Yamaha
- 3. Dani Pedrosa (SPA) Honda
- 4. Andrea Dovisioso (ITA) Honda
- 5. Loris Capirossi (ITA) Suzuki
- 6. Toni Elias (SPA) Honda
- 7. Mika Kallio (FIN) Ducati
- 8. Marco Melandri (ITA) Kawasaki
- 9. Chris Vermeulen (AUS) Suzuki
- 10. James Toseland (UK) Yamaha