MotoGP: A Bumpy Independence Day Weekend

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This weekend was a double-wammy for American motorcycle enthusiasts as we celebrated our Independence Day on Saturday, and the coming of MotoGP to Laguna Seca on Sunday. Despite the weather being cooler than in previous years, Seca proved once again to be a hot track that would be no open book to race teams.

Teams and riders had problems keeping both sides of the tires in the sticky, and suspension proved to be an issue on the bumpy and rough Seca tarmac. That didn’t stop a few riders from breaking away from the group though, and giving the American fans some fine laps of racing. Continue through to read more.

Dani Pedrosa showed the American crowd what a rabbit start looks like in MotoGP. Pedrosa charged from the second row, to take the lead into turn 1, followed by Casey Stoner and Valentino Rossi.

The trio would remain in control of the race for its first half. After a few laps though Stoner and Rossi would see Pedrosa pull away, the young Spaniard seemingly in his own place of motorcycle riding.

Following the lead three riders, Andrea Dovizioso looked like he might join the group, until crashing out. He wouldn’t be alone though, Dovi would later be joined in the gravel by Loris Capirossi, Sete Gibernau, and Galbor Talmacsi.

As Pedorsa broke away from the pack, the real race was in the battle for second. With Championship points on the line, Rossi and Stoner battled back and forth, each trying to get the edge over the other.

Rossi finally got free from Stoner, and began breaking away from him, trying to catch a now distant Pedrosa. After that, the injured Stoner seemed to move backwards, and was passed a lap later by Jorge Lorenzo in the Wayne Rainey corner, the very same spot the pair crashed in during qualifying yesterday.

In the last half of the race, Rossi found himself challenged by teammate Lorenzo. Lorezno looked like he was going to get around Rossi, but had a massive unsettling of his M1 that almost threw the Spaniard off his bike. With Lorenzo no longer knocking on his door, Rossi found his way to Dani Pedrosa.

On the last lap of the race, it looked as if Rossi would have at least one opportunity to pass the Repsol Honda rider. With two laps to go, Rossi made his move, but he was too far removed and Pedrosa closed the door, taking the drive to the finish line, and the US GP win.

Nicky Hayden was feeling the help from the home crowd, finding his way into 5th place during the race, his best result thus far this season. He finished just behind teammate Casey stoner.

Colin Edwards arguably wasn’t up to his usual self, despite being back in the United States. The American finished 6th for the day, which has been about par for the course for Edwards. Edwards would be the only Monster Yamaha Tech3 rider to finish the race, as James Toseland was flagged for a jumped start, and later pulled out of the contest for failing to comply with a stop-and-go penalty.

MotoGP now heads to Germany and the Sachsenring for racing two weeks from now, on July 19th.

Race Results from MotoGP at Laguna Seca, USA:

Pos. No. Rider Manufacturer Time Diff
1 3 Dani PEDROSA HONDA 44’01.580
2 46 Valentino ROSSI YAMAHA 44’01.924 0.344
3 99 Jorge LORENZO YAMAHA 44’03.506 1.926
4 27 Casey STONER DUCATI 44’14.012 12.432
5 69 Nicky HAYDEN DUCATI 44’23.243 21.663
6 24 Toni ELIAS HODNA 44’23.621 22.041
7 5 Colin EDWARDS YAMAHA 44’31.781 30.201
8 7 Chris VERMEULEN SUZUKI 44’34.437 32.857
9 14 Randy DE PUNIET HONDA 44’41.905 40.325
10 33 Marco MELANDRI KAWASAKI 44’49.608 48.028
11 15 Alex DE ANGELIS HONDA 44’50.390 48.810
12 88 Niccolo CANEPA DUCATI 45’20.111 1’18.531
Not classified
4 Andrea DOVIZIOSO HONDA 8’23.703 26 Lap
59 Sete GIBERNAU DUCATI 8’23.190 26 Lap
65 Loris CAPIROSSI SUZUKI 4’19.395 29 Lap
41 Gabor TALMACSI HONDA 4’22.278 29 Lap