Dovizioso Claims 1st MotoGP Win In UK
Andrea Dovizioso closed the MotoGP stay at Donington Park with his first ever premier class victory. The Oakley rider made sense of the madness that ensued with steady rainfall to earn 25 points and the honour of being the last premier class winner at the Midlands circuit. The race was one of the most unpredictable of recent years, with twists and turns every step of the way. Besides the maiden triumph there were falls for the top two in the World Championship, Rossi and Lorenzo a disastrous pre-race decision from title contender Stoner and riders holding on instead of coming in for a bike change. Dovizioso had been in the chasing group on the opening laps, but was thrust up to the front courtesy of his superior pace and mistakes from his rivals. After battling with World Championship leader Valentino Rossi at the head of the field, the young Italian found himself alone out in front as the more experienced Rossi fell at the Fogarty Esses with eleven laps remaining. Also benefitting from consistency was Randy de Puniet, top three result was his first podium of the 2009 season.
Andrea Dovizioso 1st:
“It’s a fantastic feeling to win my first MotoGP race because this is the top series in the world with the best riders and so to win is a fantastic emotion. I’m very pleased with my performance today as the conditions were so difficult. It was like three different races – riding hard at the start when it was nearly dry, following Valentino as it got wetter, and then judging the pace once I was in front. I rode well in every section and managed the very tricky situation, so it’s really satisfying. This is also important for my confidence after the last three races. In the first three laps I took a lot of risks to maintain my position with the leaders because the tires need two or three laps to get up to temperature. Once I was following Valentino it was quite easy because it’s not so difficult to follow someone in these conditions since the leader has to judge where it’s wet and where it’s dry. But when he fell it was clear from his crash that the tyres were very cold and this was scary because now I had to set the pace. Colin and Randy closed the gap quickly in the last five laps and at this point I was being careful and wasn’t pushing to the limit, but in the final two laps I pushed as hard as I could and they weren’t able to get close enough to try and pass. I’m so happy with this win, and we’ll use it to move forward. The important thing is to fight with the best riders in normal dry conditions so me and the team will work really hard to repeat this victory in the dry.”
Randy de Puniet 3rd:
“It’s like a dream for me and the team! It was a very stressful race and I was very nervous on the grid as the conditions were pretty bad. I took a good start on slick tyres and was very aggressive in the first laps, I got sixth place, but the gap to the front riders was too wide and I thought it best to keep my pace without taking any risks. Elías crashed in front of me and Pedrosa did not seem very confident on his machine. When he started to lose time I took my chance to pass him and we battled for several laps. I could overtake him as my machine was a bit faster and suddenly realized that I was holding the third position. After Rossi’s crash I took second, remaining focused as the surface was very slippery. Then Edwards came up quickly giving me the chance to reduce the gap on Dovizioso, but it was too late and too dangerous so I kept my position and we battled for second place until the last corner.