MotoGP – Pedrosa Wins Action Packed Grand Prix Of Japan

October 3, 2011

MotoGP

Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda) crossed the line first to take victory at a dramatic Grand Prix of Japan, where only two of the top seven riders did not either run off track or incur a ride through penalty in an eventful Round 15 race in which Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha Factory Racing) and Casey Stoner (Repsol Honda) completed the podium.

The 24-lap contest began with pole man Stoner launching into turn one ahead of the field, while team mate Andrea Dovizioso jumped the start from the front row, with Marco Simoncelli (San Carlo Honda Gresini Team) and Cal Crutchlow (Monster Yamaha Tech 3) both also incurring ride through penalties for the same mistake.

Ducati Team’s Valentino Rossi crashed out on the first lap, colliding with Yamaha Factory Racing’s Ben Spies and forcing the American off track which dropped Spies down the order. Meanwhile Stoner appeared set to take another victory, leading clear and free until running off the track on lap five. Shortly thereafter Héctor Barberá (Mapfre Aspar) crashed out, while Nicky Hayden (Ducati Team) ran off track after lapping in fourth position.

Lorenzo had some catching up to do, and made his way through the field to cross the line second, while Stoner climbed back to third. Simoncelli and Dovizioso took their ride through penalties and then engaged in a battle to the finish for fourth with the San Carlo Honda Gresini rider coming out on top in front of Dovizioso in fifth.

Three Americans followed next, with Spies sixth in front of Hayden and Colin Edwards (Monster Yamaha Tech 3). Hiroshi Aoyama (San Carlo Honda Gresini) avoided any drama to finish ninth in his home race with Randy de Puniet (Pramac Racing) in tenth. Crutchlow was 11th despite a run-off in addition to his ride through penalty.

That left Kousuke Akiyoshi to take 12th, as his fellow LCR Honda rider Toni Elías crashed out after lapping in sixth position. Shinichi Itoh (Honda Racing Team) was the final rider to finish the race in 13th. Damian Cudlin, riding as a replacement this weekend for the injured Loris Capirossi on the Pramac Racing team, crashed out towards the end of the race, and Álvaro Bautista (Rizla Suzuki) also went down while running in fourth position.

Karel Abraham (Cardion AB Motoracing) did not participate in the race after taking the decision not to ride. The Czech rider was still feeling the after-effects of a light head concussion sustained in a crash in the opening lap of the Aragón race.

Stoner’s lead at the top of the Championship over Lorenzo now stands at 40 points with three rounds of the 2011 season remaining.

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