Rossi elated by manner of victory

Valentino Rossi said he was thrilled to take his 101st grand prix victory in such hard-fought style after winning an early dice with Casey Stoner and then beating Jorge Lorenzo in a final lap showdown at the Sachsenring

Rossi elated by manner of victory

Having led from pole at first, Rossi was passed by Stoner's Ducati and had to pressure the Australian for several laps as Lorenzo and Dani Pedrosa closed in to make a four-bike lead train.

Both Yamahas eventually passed Stoner, and commenced their own huge battle for victory, with Lorenzo getting ahead before Rossi re-passed into the first corner with two laps to go and then resisted all his team-mate's efforts to win by just 0.099s.

"Another fantastic race," said Rossi. "Another great battle with Stoner earlier, and then after that an especially great battle with Jorge all the way to the last lap.

"I was able to overtake Casey and I was faster, but I saw that Jorge overtook Casey straight away. It is always more difficult to fight with Jorge.

"In the last laps I tried to push a lot but he was able to overtake. We arrived at the end and I made my attack, and after that I know at this racetrack it is very hard to overtake, so I tried to stay in front and on the last lap I was very fast at the crucial points."

He was delighted to see all four title contenders in the fight for victory, and reckoned the level of overtaking was down to the unusual variety of tyre compound changes.

"All the people in front in the championship were very close for all the race. It was fun, but very tough," Rossi said. "There was some overtaking this time because the top riders' choices of tyres were different, so all the bikes had different behaviour."

The result extends Rossi's championship lead to 14 points, with Stoner now 28 points adrift of the Italian in third.

"Another victory is very important, the fourth of the season, and another small advantage in the championship, so I'm so happy," said Rossi.

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