Jorge puts the hammer down
ROUND 9 - Italy 13-15 July 2012
Circuit Length:5.245 Km
Moto3 - 20 laps
Moto2 - 21 laps
MotoGP - 23 laps
The Mugello results:-MotoGP
1 Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha), 41 mins 37.477 secs (race average speed 173.889 km/h)
2 Dani Pedrosa (Honda), 5.223 behind
3 Andrea Dovizioso (Yamaha), 10.665s behind
PP Pedrosa, 1:47.284 =176 km/h • FL Pedrosa, 1:47.705 = 175.312 km/h
1 Andrea Iannone (Speed Up), 39 mins 52.523 secs (race average speed 165.733 km/h)
2 Pol Espargaro (Kalex), 0.090s behind
3 Tom Lüthi (Suter), 0.897s behind
PP Espargaro, 1:52.369 = 168.035 km/h • FL Lüthi, 1:52.815 = 167.371 km/h
1 Maverick Viñales (FTR Honda), 39 mins 57.374 secs (race average speed 157.522 km/h)
2 Romano Fenati (FTR Honda)), 0.020 behind
3 Sandro Cortese (KTM Ajo), 0.071s behind
PP Viñales,1:57.980 = 160.044 km/h • FL Cortese, 1:58.569 = 159.249 km/h
MotoGP: Jorge puts the hammer down
A fifth victory of 2012 in the Italian Grand Prix has lifted Jorge Lorenzo into a 19-point lead in the overall standings ahead of Spanish compatriot Dani Pedrosa. The Yamaha ace dominated Mugello from start to finish with only a minor glitch in qualifying, where his bike cut out on the last corner of his last lap, and won going away from Pedrosa’s Honda and the satellite Yamaha of Andrea Dovizioso.
“From the beginning I felt great on this track, the asphalt was completely different to Sachsenring which was a nightmare for us,” said Lorenzo, who leads Pedrosa 185-166 at the halfway point of the season. “Today I was hammering a lot to open a gap at the beginning of the race as I thought my competitors would have problems on cold tyres. Unfortunately I couldn’t do it immediately. Only hammering every lap and going faster and faster from 1’48.1 then into the 47s could I open a bit to Pedrosa then little by little it got better and I could start to breathe.”
Pedrosa started from his second pole position of the season – a time of 1:47.284 km/h that was close on eight-tenths faster than Casey Stoner’s previous Mugello benchmark. The performance also catapulted Pedrosa to the top of the all-time pole-winners’ list among Spanish riders in the senior class with 21. But despite setting a new Mugello record on lap 10 he had no answer to the Yamaha’s sustained pace and settled for a comfortable second.
Totally uncomfortable was Honda teammate Casey Stoner. “At the moment Jorge and Dani are on a different level,” Stoner said early in the Mugello weekend, and the race underlined his belief. The only man to start on the special construction hard rear Bridgestone, Stoner slipped to eighth from his grid position of fifth, had a minor off that relegated him to 10th and could finish no higher than eighth to sit 18 points behind Pedrosa and 37 adrift of Lorenzo. Stoner also apologised for side-swiping Alvaro Bautista late in the race: “I went to make the pass into turn 2 and he started to close my front off and I couldn't do anything. It's a disappointing end to a difficult weekend that I thought I might be able to salvage something from but unfortunately not,” the Australian concluded.
Dovizioso claimed his third straight podium and his fourth in five races to cement fourth place overall and open a 13-point gap over teammate Cal Crutchlow. ‘Dovi’ is the only satellite rider to have finished in the top three in 2012. “The podium here for an Italian rider is amazing, it’s a dream,” he said, but he had to fight all the way to win it from a brilliant Stefan Bradl on the LCR Honda, posting his best result so far in fourth place.
The home crowd was thrilled to see a competitive finish by Valentino Rossi for Ducati. Nine times a winner at Mugello, Rossi had the late-race pace to have fought for a podium if he had qualified higher than 10th. “That is two races where I can stay on quite a good rhythm to the last lap, and that is very important for me,” said the maestro after taking fifth place ahead of Crutchlow. “It’s still positive for the team, we are optimistic because the pace was good and it seems we have a better base to improve the bike.”
Moto2: 'Crazy Joe' is the home hero
They may call him ‘Crazy Joe’, but Andrea Iannone produced a very clever finish to win his home race on the Speed Master Speed Up and inch closer to title leader Marc Marquez, whose Honda was fifth after a late-race sit-up. Iannone bided his time and pounced on the final lap of 21 to pass long-time leader Pol Espargaro’s Kalex on the inside of Turn 1 and set up his second race win of 2012. Going into the smaller classes’ summer break, Espargaro and Iannone now sit on 129 points to Marquez’s 163.
Third in Sunday’s race was Tom Lüthi, the Suter rider bouncing back to his best form after three low-key rounds and setting the fastest race lap on lap 18 on his way to his fifth podium of the season. The Swiss rider is fourth, six points behind Espargaro and Iannone. Toni Elias, meanwhile, crashed heavily in the later stages of the race and has announced his split from the Mapfre Aspar Team.
Moto3: Maverick can't be reined in
Maverick Viñales won a thrilling last-lap battle with Romano Fenati and Sandro Cortese to claim his fifth win of the season and move to within nine points of Cortese in the Championship battle ahead of the summer pause. As a seven-rider front group thinned out in the final laps, Viñales used his FTR Honda’s corner exit speed to edge clear and hold off early-season star Fenati’s similar machine by just two-hundredths of a second on the final sprint. The brilliantly consistent Cortese’s KTM was a further five-hundredths behind – the German’s eighth podium in nine 2012 starts.
After the heady heights of the Sachsenring, Australians Jack Miller and Arthur Sissis were brought back to earth as Sissis retired with mechanical problems at three-quarter distance and Miller finished 21st after qualifying 25th. Sissis, Cortese’s Red Bull KTM Ajo teammate, was moving through the field from 29th on the grid when the bike failed: “That’s the best first few laps I’ve done,” said the crestfallen Adelaide youngster. “The engine lost power, then just died. I’m a bit disappointed because I was going good and could have got some good points.” Sissis is 14th overall and Miller 20th.