A fine scrap for the lead


Rossi celebrates again

After Yamaha’s two-rider team dominated the sixth of 17 Moto GP races this season, there’s a three-rider points tie for the world championship. Fiat Yamaha’s Valentino Rossi made a last-gasp, last-lap, last-corner pass to beat his team-mate Jorge Lorenzo at Lorenzo’s Spanish home track at the fabulous Catalunya track in Barcelona this weekend, while Ducati’s Casey Stoner finished third — those three are at the top of the points table.

While the racing wasn’t World Superbike lots-of-people-scrapping, the race for the lead was riveting from start to finish, and several of the battles farther back were definitely worthy of note as well. We didn’t keep track of the lead changes, but there were four on the last lap — it was spectacular, and even the seriously well-seasoned Valentino Rossi was over the moon with excitement over the win.

Even with that, showing his class Rossi made a point in his victory lane interview to pay tribute to the fact that his team manager Jeremy Burgess’ mother had died the day before.

Lorenzo also impressed in his interview. Clearly disappointed at losing a race in front of a Spanish home crowd in the last corner, he merely said he’d been beaten by a guy with more experience. You’ve got to love that kind of honesty in a racer.

Farther down the field, Dani Pedrosa impressed by riding through the pain of a cracked femur to collect sixth, just behind Rizla Suzuki’s Loris Capirossi. Colin Edwards, on one of the Monster Tech 3 Yamahas, also had a great ride, overcoming a seriously horrible start that sent him from the third row to the back of the grid, eventually scrambling back up to seventh.

Casey Stoner in third should also be complimented for a gritty ride. He’s picked up some kind of bug and was sick as a dog all day, saying in the interviews that he was "all used up" at half distance and looking like a walking corpse while saying it. Nice work, Mr. Stoner.

So at one-third distance in the series, we have the following top 10 (first three tied in points but ranked by order of firsts, seconds, and thirds so far):

1. Valentino Rossi, Italy, Fiat Yamaha, 106 points; 2. Jorge Lorenzo, Spain, Fiat Yamaha, 106; 3. Casey Stoner, Australia, Marlboro Ducati, 106; 4. Andrea Dovizioso, Italy, Repsol Honda, 69; 5. Dani Pedrosa, Spain, Repsol Honda, 67; 6. Colin Edwards, USA, Monster Yamaha Tech 3, 54; 7. Marco Melandri, Italy, Hayate Racing Kawasaki, 50; 8. Loris Capirossi, Italy, Rizla Suzuki, 49; 9. Randy De Puniet, France, LCR Honda, 42; 10. Chris Vermeulen, Australia, Rizla Suzuki, 42.

The next event is in the Netherlands at Assen June 27.


  1. You have a valid point, but at the end of the day it’s still racing, and you should race to win. 2nd place is the first loser. Just my humble opinion. And it made for a damn fine spectacular race as well

  2. I’m curious. Why did Rossi feel it was necessary to chance such a move on the last lap of a race with his Fiat Yamaha team mate in the lead? Aren’t team members supposed to support each other in races? I can recall Hayden being seriously taken out by his team mate (Pedrosa as I recall) a few years ago during an important race. To me, it just doesn’t make sense. Is it simply every man for himself these days? Can someone shed some light on this subject?

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