Lorenzo wins dramatic Spanish GP

Jorge Lorenzo took a home victory in the Spanish Grand Prix at a damp Jerez - but only after Valentino Rossi had taken Casey Stoner out in a collision as they fought for second place, and Marco Simoncelli had crashed out of the lead

Lorenzo wins dramatic Spanish GP

Yamaha was set for a one-two until Ben Spies crashed out with just three laps to go, allowing Dani Pedrosa (Honda) to reclaim second despite struggling for speed late on.

Simoncelli and Rossi had been the stars of the opening laps, making the best of the wet conditions to make swift progress up the order.

Though Stoner had led from pole, ahead of Lorenzo, at first, Simoncelli was soon with the lead duo, and sliced past the Yamaha and the Honda in quick succession to hit the front on lap six.

Rossi's Ducati was also surging through, and by lap seven the Italian had taken third from Lorenzo. He then went down the inside of Stoner for second into the first corner, but though the Ducati nosed ahead, he then lost control and fell, sliding into Stoner and eliminating the Honda. Rossi was able to continue at the back of the field and would later visit the Honda garage to apologise to Stoner.

That gave Simoncelli a two-second lead over Lorenzo, and the Gresini Honda rider seemed to have a fine chance of taking not only his maiden MotoGP win, but the first for a satellite rider since Toni Elias' Estoril triumph for Gresini in 2006.

But the dream ended on lap 12, when Simoncelli made a mistake at the first corner and was launched into a high-side as he tried to catch his sliding bike.

Now into the lead, Lorenzo looked set to come under threat from Pedrosa. The Honda rider had lacked pace in the opening laps, tumbling right down to 10th place before mounting a fightback that took him all the way to second.

Lorenzo had things under control, though, and with Pedrosa's pace fading as expected in the closing stages while the Honda rider battles with his arm issue, the world champion was able to stretch away.

Spies then closed in on Pedrosa, who did his best to hold the Yamaha off but eventually had to relinquish second. He soon reclaimed the place though, when Spies had a low-side with only three laps to go.

Ducati's Nicky Hayden held third after the early crashes among the leaders, before his pace drifted away and he fell to fourth. He lost that spot to Colin Edwards (Tech 3 Yamaha) moments before Spies' crash turned it into a podium place - then was given third back again when Edwards parked in the gravel at the start of the final lap.

Hiroshi Aoyama gave Gresini some consolation with a strong ride to fourth, right on Hayden's tail, ahead of the recovering Rossi and Aspar Ducati's Hector Barbera.

Rookie Cal Crutchlow (Tech 3 Yamaha) had been doing an exceptional job to run fifth for much of the race, until a late fall saw him drop to eighth. Fellow newcomer Karel Abraham also fell as he battled to resist Aoyama for seventh, but with the attrition ahead the Cardion AB Ducati rider was able to get the position back in the end. Toni Elias (LCR Honda) and John Hopkins (Suzuki) completed the top 10.

Andrea Dovizioso had a trip through the gravel and a pitstop on the way to a distant 12th on the third Honda.

Randy de Puniet's strong qualifying performance for Pramac Ducati was wasted by a bad start and later an incident that forced him to retire.

Results - 27 laps: Pos Rider Team/Bike Time/Gap 1. Jorge Lorenzo Yamaha 50m49.046s 2. Dani Pedrosa Honda + 19.339s 3. Nicky Hayden Ducati + 29.085s 4. Hiroshi Aoyama Gresini Honda + 29.551s 5. Valentino Rossi Ducati + 1m02.227s 6. Hector Barbera Aspar Ducati + 1m08.440s 7. Karel Abraham Cardion Ducati + 1m14.120s 8. Cal Crutchlow Tech 3 Yamaha + 1m19.110s 9. Toni Elias LCR Honda + 1m42.906s 10. John Hopkins Suzuki + 1m48.395s 11. Loris Capirossi Pramac Ducati + 1m51.876s 12. Andrea Dovizioso Honda + 1 lap Retirements: Colin Edwards Tech 3 Yamaha 26 laps Ben Spies Yamaha 24 laps Randy De Puniet Pramac Ducati 16 laps Marco Simoncelli Gresini Honda 11 laps Casey Stoner Honda 7 laps 
shares
comments
Suzuki buoyed by Hopkins' form
Previous article

Suzuki buoyed by Hopkins' form

Next article

Hayden: Ducati fantastic in the wet

Hayden: Ducati fantastic in the wet
Load comments
Injury, COVID, camels and redemption: A MotoGP star's Dakar odyssey Plus

Injury, COVID, camels and redemption: A MotoGP star's Dakar odyssey

Danilo Petrucci’s decision to switch to rallying at the conclusion of his time in MotoGP at the end of 2021 raised many eyebrows. Deciding to make his rally raid debut at the Dakar courted scepticism. With his debut almost over on several occasions before it began, Petrucci’s Dakar odyssey was a wild affair full of ups, downs and a run-in with a camel. He sat down with Autosport to reveal all

Why a difficult 2021 hasn't broken one Honda MotoGP ace's resolve Plus

Why a difficult 2021 hasn't broken one Honda MotoGP ace's resolve

Pol Espargaro’s switch to Honda for 2021 was one of MotoGP’s biggest rider market shocks. But a difficult bike coupled with various external factors led to a difficult first campaign. As a critical 2022 campaign for both Espargaro and Honda looms, his 2021 experience hasn’t dented his long-held resolve

MotoGP
Jan 17, 2022
The Drive to Survive mistakes MotoGP must avoid in 2022 Plus

The Drive to Survive mistakes MotoGP must avoid in 2022

OPINION: MotoGP will get its own Drive to Survive-style series in 2022, airing on Amazon Prime Video. It’s a much-needed grab at the mainstream for MotoGP, but a paradigm shift in the series highlighted by one of its leading stars must be embraced and not overshadowed by a desire to replicate DTS’s popcorn drama

MotoGP
Jan 10, 2022
Why KTM's latest young outcast is a cautionary tale for MotoGP Plus

Why KTM's latest young outcast is a cautionary tale for MotoGP

Iker Lecuona’s absence from the 2022 MotoGP grid after losing his KTM ride will likely pass most onlookers by. But after just 30 race starts in a MotoGP move he was sucked into by circumstance, the World Superbike-bound 21-year-old's story should act as a warning to KTM - and MotoGP as a whole - in regards to its future stars

MotoGP
Jan 4, 2022
How Ducati's expanded roster will threaten MotoGP's balance in 2022 Plus

How Ducati's expanded roster will threaten MotoGP's balance in 2022

That Ducati will compete with eight prototypes in MotoGP this year is nothing new, having already done so between 2016 and 2018. But the involvement and coverage of the Borgo Panigale company in its alliances is now much greater than in past years, which could have the effect of unbalancing the premier class

MotoGP
Jan 3, 2022
Ranking the top 10 MotoGP riders of 2021 Plus

Ranking the top 10 MotoGP riders of 2021

Eight different riders won races across an ultra-competitive 2021 MotoGP season. Although Fabio Quartararo wrapped up the title with two rounds to go, the Yamaha rider had strong competition from the revitalised Ducati factory team and the world championship's returning king. Autosport picks out the year's 10 best riders

MotoGP
Dec 23, 2021
How Quartararo cast aside prior doubts to become MotoGP's new king Plus

How Quartararo cast aside prior doubts to become MotoGP's new king

Doubts were cast over Yamaha’s French recruit after his disastrous end to the 2020 MotoGP season with Petronas SRT, but Fabio Quartararo answered them convincingly in 2021 to claim a MotoGP title that exhibited both his devastating speed and mental strength

MotoGP
Dec 7, 2021
The Rossi-less future MotoGP must now navigate Plus

The Rossi-less future MotoGP must now navigate

Motorcycle racing's greatest showman has left the stage, as Valentino Rossi calls time on his remarkable career on two wheels. But in his successors, all of whom were inspired by 'the Doctor', grand prix racing has vibrant new acts to keep us hooked

MotoGP
Dec 4, 2021