Lorenzo Produces Ride of His Life to Take Rousing Victory in Jerez

Race Report

Jorge Lorenzo produced one of the rides of his life to take a superb win in Spain today, the grandeur of a full-to-bursting Jerez providing a fitting amphitheatre for his first MotoGP win on home soil. Valentino Rossi finished third, making it a sixteenth double podium for the Fiat Yamaha pair since 2008.

Lorenzo got a bad start and had dropped from second to fifth by the second lap, as he struggled to find a rhythm with a full fuel tank. On lap five he was able to pass Casey Stoner and then, five laps on, Nicky Hayden but he looked destined to stay in third as he languished 1.5 seconds adrift of Rossi, who was in turn the same distance from Pedrosa. With a third of the race to go however the Spaniard picked up pace, suddenly the fastest man on track as he stormed up on his team-mate. On lap 22 he despatched the Italian but with only five laps left and a two second gap a victory still looked unlikely. The tenacious youngster was not giving up however in pursuit of a sixth premier-class win and he rapidly gained on his fellow Spaniard to bring himself within striking distance on his penultimate lap. His first attempt to pass resulted in a dramatic moment as they both momentarily looked like running off track and in the end he had to leave it to the last lap to make the definitive move, passing Pedrosa on the bakes at the end of the back straight and crossing the line 0.543 seconds ahead. Lorenzo, who turns 23 on Tuesday, celebrated in hilarious style by leaping into the lake in the middle of the circuit, much to the rapture of the home fans who were already celebrating Spanish wins in the 125cc and Moto2 classes earlier in the day.

Rossi was happy to make the podium, having struggled all weekend to overcome his injured shoulder and set-up problems with his M1. The World Champion got a great start from the second row and was second behind Pedrosa for most of the race. He stayed in touch in the early stages but began to drop back as his bike started to slide, eventually giving best to his charging team-mate and settling for the final podium spot and a valuable 16 points, 0.4 seconds behind Pedrosa.

The Championship is now led by Lorenzo with 45 points, while Rossi is four points off him in second. The riders now have a three-week break before the French round at Le Mans on 23rd May.

Jorge Lorenzo - Position: 1stTime: 45'17.538
"It has always been one of my dreams to win a MotoGP race in Spain and this was like a movie, everything that could possibly happen did! It was a very hard race because I made such a bad start and then found it very difficult in the first laps - I gave myself a tough job to do. After that I started to feel better and rode like a demon to get to the front. Once I passed Valentino I knew that I couldn't take it easy, I had to try everything to win and it was all I could think about. I had a great fight with Dani and in one moment we nearly crashed so I had to try again, on the very last lap! I know it's better to win races calmly, from the front, but lately that hasn't been the way for us and I have had to fight on every lap. I saw the lake on Thursday and thought it would be funny to jump in and I think the fans liked it, but I didn't really think about how heavy I'd be with wet leathers and for a minute I thought I wasn't going to get out! This has been an amazing day, I can't believe I've achieved this dream of mine, in front of all the Spanish fans at this magical place."

Valentino Rossi - Position: 3rdTime: +0.890
"This just wasn't our race this year. We have struggled all weekend, first with my shoulder and then with the bike, and in the race today I couldn't do any more than third. I got a great start and was fast with the new tyre, I tried to go with Dani but then I started to slide a lot and I just had to play it safe. I made no mistakes and I'm happy about my race in the circumstances, these 16 points are very important. At the end I had a front-row seat to the Spanish party and I admit I was sorry not to be involved, Jorge did a great job today and I think it was very exciting for all the fans. I want to say thank you to Dr. Costa and all the staff at the Clinica Mobile, plus everyone back in Italy who has worked on my shoulder to allow me to be able to race this weekend. I will hopefully be back to full strength in Le Mans so I'm looking forward to that."

Wilco Zeelenberg - Team Manager
"It's fantastic to win this race in this way. The race itself was amazing, especially the last ten laps; a fight on the edge. Before the race started our target was just to be on the podium again and we managed the highest step, so we could not ask for more! Jorge was so fast at the end of the race, really amazing. We have wondered why he seems to get much stronger at the end of races; I think it's a combination of his riding style and confidence, because from a technical point of view there doesn't seem to be anything wrong. Apart from a less than perfect start, he controlled the bike very well during and kept a very good pace. He was able to keep the pace at the beginning and never gave up; he just got better. The target for the season remains the same, to keep aiming for the podium every weekend. We all know there are a lot of great riders out there and they all want to win, so it won't be easy. We have always been confident about our potential and now we are even more so. Well done to Jorge and all the team."

Davide Brivio - Team Manager
"Considering his recent injury we can see this as a very good result. The shoulder was okay and in fact the setting was the bigger problem, but the team did a great job to improve it as much as they could and we are happy that we made it onto the podium. Valentino got a fantastic start and was fast in the early stages but later on he couldn't keep pace with Lorenzo and Pedrosa so 16 points is good for us today. We have some work to do for Le Mans, when we hope Valentino will be back to full fitness. Well done to Jorge and all his side of the garage, he did a great race today."

Tough Spanish MotoGP race for Monster Yamaha Tech 3

The Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team was left to contemplate what might have been after a difficult and disappointing Spanish MotoGP race at the Jerez circuit this afternoon.

Colin Edwards fought a determined battle at the rear of a frenetic battle for seventh position in front of a sun-drenched crowd of 122,048 passionate Spanish fans.

The Texan eventually had to settle for 12th position after he encountered small rear grip issues in the crucial final stages that left him unable to mount a sustained offensive on the exciting mid-pack dice.

It was also a frustrating first Jerez MotoGP experience for 25-year-old Ben Spi es, who had started the race with high expectations after a brilliant performance in practice and qualifying.

The reigning World Superbike champion made a blistering start and gained two places on the opening lap to sit menacingly behind former world champion Casey Stoner in sixth position.

But just as Spies looked to consolidate his place in the leading group, he encountered a front-end issue that saw him unable to maintain his fast pace.

Despite his valiant efforts to continue and score valuable points for the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team, Spies opted to retire at the end of lap eight after he'd fallen out of the top ten.

The Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team will be hoping for improved fortunes when the MotoGP world championship resumes in France later this month. The Le Mans clash is the all-important home race for the Monster Yamaha Te ch 3 Team, with high hopes of a strong display in the third round of the 2010 campaign.

Colin Edwards - Position: 12thTime: +38.371
"I think I've had one good race at Jerez in my entire career and today wasn't it. This weekend has been a struggle and I've never been comfortable on the bike to show the pace I know I am capable of. Right from the start I had issues with the rear grip and I couldn't hold any load on the tyre at full lean angle. That also created some problems with the front-end, so I just struggled with the balance of the bike. It's the exact same issue that I had in Qatar even though the set-up I'm running is quite a bit different. I'd just like to be in a race. At the moment I just feel like I'm riding around and suffering. I can only look forward to Le Mans knowing that I go really well at that track and so does the Yamaha."

Ben Spies - Position: DNF
"It's just one of those things that can happen but it's really unfortunate because after coming here and learning the track really quick I thought we had a really good package for the race. The Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team had worked really hard but I just had some problem with the front-end. I'm not sure what the problem is but I've looked at the data and you can clearly see I had an issue. The bike just wasn't reacting like it should and it is a big shame. I got a really good start and was right behind Casey but pretty much from the first lap I knew I had a problem. I tried to round around the problem but at the end of the day I wasn't going to be scoring any points and I'd have risked crashing if I'd continued. The consolation is that I know we had the speed for a good result and there are a lot of positive points to take from the weekend. We can go to Le Mans confident that I'll be able to show more of my true potential."

Circuit Length: 4423
Weather: Dry
Lap Record: 1'39.818 (Valentino Rossi, 01/01/2009)
Fastest Lap Ever: 1'38.189 (Jorge Lorenzo, 30/03/2008)
Last Years Winner: Valentino Rossi

2010 MotoGP Spain - Jerez de la Frontera 02/05/2010

Race 1 - 27 Laps
Pos. Rider Manu. Nat. Total Time
1 Jorge Lorenzo Yamaha ESP 45'17.538
2 Daniel Pedrosa Honda ESP 0'00.543
3 Valentino Rossi Yamaha ITA 0'00.890
4 Nicky Hayden Ducati USA 0'09.015
5 Casey Stoner Ducati AUS 0'10.034
6 Andrea Dovizioso Honda ITA 0'23.144
7 Mika Kallio Ducati FIN 0'34.489
8 Marco Melandri Honda ITA 0'34.687
9 Randy De Puniet Honda FRA 0'36.160
10 Alvaro Bautista Suzuki ESP 0'36.791
11 Marco Simoncelli Honda ITA 0'37.155
12 Colin Edwards Yamaha USA 0'38.371
13 Hector Barbera Ducati ESP 0'38.371
14 Hiroshi Aoyama Honda JPN 1'02.052
15 Aleix Espargaro Ducati ESP -3Laps
RIDER STANDINGS 02/05/2010
Pos. Rider Manu. Nat. Points
1 Jorge Lorenzo Yamaha ESP 45
2 Valentino Rossi Yamaha ITA 41
3 Daniel Pedrosa Honda ESP 29
4 Nicky Hayden Ducati USA 26
5 Andrea Dovizioso Honda ITA 26
6 Randy De Puniet Honda FRA 17
7 Colin Edwards Yamaha USA 12
8 Marco Melandri Honda ITA 11
9 Ben Spies Yamaha USA 11
10 Casey Stoner Ducati AUS 11
11 Marco Simoncelli Honda ITA 10
12 Mika Kallio Ducati FIN 9
13 Hiroshi Aoyama Honda JPN 8
14 Loris Capirossi Suzuki ITA 7
15 Hector Barbera Ducati ESP 7
MANUFACTURER STANDINGS 02/05/2010
Pos. Manufacturer Points
1 Yamaha 50
2 Honda 36
3 Ducati 26
4 Suzuki 13
Lorenzo Produces Ride of His Life to Take Rousing Victory in Jerez
Valentino Rossi
Colin Edwards
Ben Spies