Jorge Lorenzo Wins In Japan

0829_R02_Lorenzo_grid

Jorge Lorenzo emerged victorious from a thrilling Polini Grand Prix of Japan at Twin Ring Motegi, the second win of his MotoGP career and a result that retained his 100% podium record in the 2009 season. The Oakley rider took little time in taking the reigns of the race, having started from the front row and showed no fear when faced with the likes of Dani Pedrosa and Valentino Rossi in front of him. However, despite a relatively comfortable advantage, Lorenzo was never quite able to say a definitive ‘sayonara’ to his rivals as the action heated up. He held on to cross the line with a gap of less than two seconds between him and second placed teammate Rossi.Lorenzo moves up into first place in the overall classification, for the second time in his MotoGP career.

Oakley rider Casey Stoner, due to a problem with his bike set-up, was unable to break away as he had done in Qatar, nontheless finishing fourth and keeping up the pressure in the general standings. Oakley’s Andrea Dovizioso completed a fine day in fifth, ahead of Marco Melandri, Loris Capirossi, James Toseland and Chris Vermeulen. Home rider Yuki Takahashi crashed out of the race taking Oakley’s Nicky Hayden out with him on the second lap.

Japan Race Finish:
1 J. LORENZO SPA Oakley
2 V. ROSSI ITA
3 D. PEDROSA SPA
4 C. STONER AUS Oakley
5 A. DOVIZIOSO ITA Oakley
6 M. MELANDRI ITA Oakley
7 L. CAPIROSSI ITA Oakley
8 M. KALLIO FIN
9 J. TOSELAND GBR Oakley
10 C. VERMEULEN AUS Oakley

JORGE LORENZO 1st
“I am the leader in the championship but I still think that Casey, Valentino and Dani are stronger than us. They are more experienced with the Bridgestone tires while we are still learning about them and improving.Today I had a great opportunity to win, I knew that with a hard rear tyre I had good pace, so I saw the chance and I attacked. Jerez is unbelievable -as we all know. All the people there have warm hearts and they are very passionate about the Spanish riders. I think if there is one track where you should take a risk to win it is there.”

CASEY STONER 4th
“We have had the same issues as everybody else, I suppose, in that we haven’t had time to set the bike up but all in all I think we were capable of at least matching the lap times of the front guys – we just lost too much time at the start. On the warm-up lap I felt I a lot of chatter from the front brakes, they weren’t smooth and I wasn’t confident over the first five or six laps. I really didn’t know what to do, I wasn’t able to brake where I wanted to and I wasn’t confident. Maybe I could have gone faster but I don’t know how safe that would have been. Anyway, I lost a lot of positions at the beginning of the race and I spent too much time battling to get past. When I got closer to the front it was a bit too late, unfortunately. I tried to stay as consistent as I could and when I got closer to Andrea I rode a bit harder because I saw it was possible to pass him. So the race was not completely lost, we didn’t lose that many points and this is a much better start to the season than last year, so we can definitely feel positive going into the next one.”

NICKY HAYDEN DNF
“That was exactly what we didn’t need. I got a decent start and I think I was up a couple of positions but just going down into the hairpin, which is a slow hard-braking corner, I was on my line and Takahashi just took me down. There was no warning – I didn’t even hear anything! I don’t want to say much about that, I don’t want to look like a cry-baby but, you know, it was the first lap… luckily I feel okay. I actually landed in the same place on my back as the crash in Qatar and my leathers and helmet have got exactly the same marks. It’s a shame because this weekend I honestly felt we were making some progress. I felt we had better communication going on and we worked more comfortably from the first day. I know we were never looking at a great result but I felt I could have been competitive today. Anyway, we have to move forward and to look to the next race.”