MotoGP > MotoGP 2005 Round 07: Netherlands GP > Race Results
MotoGPNetherlandsJune 25, 2005
MotoGP World Championship Grand Prix Round 7
Netherlands Grand Prix at Assen

Melandri Makes Rossi Work Hard For His Win

Qualifying >>

Valentino Rossi (Yamaha) won his sixth race of the season when he fended off a strong challenge from second-placed Marco Melandri (Team Movistar Honda RC211V). Colin Edwards (Yamaha) was third.



Marco MELANDRI (Team Movistar Honda MotoGP)


Marco MELANDRI (Team Movistar Honda MotoGP)


In warm, but overcast conditions, after heavy overnight and early morning rain after two days of beating heat, the 19-lap MotoGP race got underway with Melandri leading the pack into turn one from his team-mate Gibernau with Shinya Nakano (Kawasaki) showing well early in third. Nicky Hayden (Repsol Honda RC211V) was looking good as he moved up from fourth on lap one to second by lap two and he shared an early fastest lap time of the race with Melandri as he tried to establish himself with the pace-setters.

A crowd of 90,000 watched as Melandri tried to break clear of his rivals setting a fastest lap on lap three as he tried to shake Hayden off. But Hayden dropped off the pace as Gibernau forced his way past the American when he ran wide at the Horseshoe turn.

Rossi was up to second place by lap eight having displaced Gibernau and it wasn’t long before Melandri and Rossi had separated themselves from Gibernau, who was now under pressure from Edwards for third.

On lap ten Rossi passed Melandri into the Horseshoe and immediately upped the pace. But Marco hung onto him as the pair pulled further clear of Gibernau who was about to be caught and passed by Edwards. By lap 12 Rossi and Melandri were 1.4 seconds clear of the Texan rider.

Rossi now put the pressure on Melandri by upping the pace. The reigning World Champion set a fastest lap on lap 13 as he attempted to drop the challenger. He established a 1.16 second gap before Melandri responded by reducing it to just 0.54 seconds with two laps to go.

But Rossi finally broke Melandri’s ambition with a fastest lap of 2 min 0.991 s on the final lap of the race to finish 1.583 seconds clear at the flag. Edwards came in a distant third while Nicky took fourth place ahead of Sete, Max Biaggi (Repsol Honda RC211V) and then Alex Barros (Camel Honda RC211V) in seventh.

Melandri said, “I got a good start and fought with Sete for the first few laps. I had some problems in the last part of the track and I tried to follow Valentino to learn from him. I almost fell off halfway through the race, then got my confidence back again and tried to catch him. Then my tyre started to spin up too much so I settled for second.”

Nicky’s fourth place was not enough for him, “It’s been a tough weekend. This morning the track was so different we had to gamble with settings. The tyre I chose was really good for the first few laps and I was able to make a few passes. The Rossi and Edwards came by and I had to regroup a little. In the end I got past Gibernau for a pretty lonely fourth.”

Fifth-placed Sete said, “This has been one of the worst. I didn’t have any grip and nearly fell a couple of times in the race. I can’t deny that I’m really upset with the way things are going, but as ever I’ll be riding hard to change this at Laguna Seca in two weeks.”

Max knows his sixth place isn’t good enough. “I had no grip,” he said. “I couldn’t get into the turns and open the throttle like I wanted to. I could only fight for the lower positions. This is not the level that we should be working at. We can do better because we have to.”

Alex, in seventh, said, “Today’s race was frankly terrible for me, because I was never able to ride as I would have liked. Unfortunately the tyre I chose didn’t suit the colder conditions after the overnight rain and the storms this morning. I chose not to take the harder tyre that Rossi, Melandri and Edwards probably used, I think Hayden maybe too, because it didn’t work for me in practice. This was a mistake.”

Troy Bayliss (Camel Honda RC211V) finished 11th and said, “What can I say about this race, it was average considering recent races, and despite giving everything once more I was unable to ride as well as I can. I’m obviously not happy, because there’s not much difference for me between eleventh and twentieth, but there’s not much else I can do apart from continuing to work hard.”

Makoto Tamada (Konica Minolta Honda RC211V) finished 14th and said, “After having analyzed this afternoon lap times, I couldn’t believe my fastest lap was three seconds slower than the race fastest lap. I never found the right feeling to be able to push the bike to its limit. And the pain in my right forearm didn’t help me out. This has been the darkest day of my MotoGP career. Now we have to evaluate what to do.”

The World Championship points table now shows Rossi with 170 points, Melandri on 107, Biaggi with 87 and Sete in fourth with 84.

Sebastian Porto (Aprilia) won the 250cc race from Dani Pedrosa (Team Movistar Honda RS250RW) with Jorge Lorenzo (Fortuna Honda RS250RW) third. Lorenzo led all but the last lap after starting from pole but when Porto and Pedrosa passed him on the penultimate lap he had nothing in reserve.

An eight-rider group separated from the rest of the field as early as lap five and it wasn’t until just after mid-race distance in this 18-lap contest that the three front men left their pursuers to fight it out among themselves.

As they increased the gap on Andrea Dovizioso (Scot Racing Team Honda RS250RW), the man holding fourth place, in the closing laps, it was Pedrosa who made the first move on Porto who then moved up the inside of both Lorenzo and Pedrosa with a lap to go.

Pedrosa, now second to Porto, was expected to execute his usual last lap pass to take the flag but he had no answer to Porto’s speed and composure and the Argentine looked comfortable as he crossed the line for his first win of the year.

Hiroshi Aoyama (Team Movistar Honda RS250RW) won the fight for fourth place while Dovi eventually finished seventh.

Hector Barbera (Fortuna Honda RS250RW), who was running as high as fifth on lap six, was among the top ten finishers in ninth place.

Dani said, “I had a difficult race because when those guys were in front they pushed really hard and I had a lot of ground to make up in the early laps. I had a few slides from the front tyre and in the last part of the track I was losing a few tenths, so it could have been a lot worse.”

Lorenzo, who had surgery on a broken collarbone less than two weeks ago, said, “That was a little bit disappointing. I made a little mistake on the last lap and lost ground. But I really should be happy with this after being injured and managing to get onto the podium.”

The World Championship points table looks like this: Pedrosa 143, Stoner, who finished sixth today 106, Dovi 102.

Gabor Talmacsi (KTM) won a thrilling 125cc race from second-placed Hector Faubel and third-placed finisher Mattia Pasini (both Aprilia). Alvaro Bautista (Seedorf Racing Honda RS125RW) was fourth – his best finish so far this season.

Talmacsi and his team-mate Mika Kallio made the best of their front row starts to lead the pack into turn one with Thomas Luthi (Elit Grand Prix Honda RS125R) right up with them. Only by lap four did the order of the front-runners establish itself – with a nine-rider train at the front!

The pattern was set until those nine became eight and then when Kallio crashed out on lap 14 of the 17-lap race, a seven-rider contest ensued with Marco Simoncelli (Aprilia) leading the final laps with Talmacsi, Luthi, Bautista, Mattia Pasini, Hector Faubel (both Aprilia) and the in-form Alexis Masbou (Ajo Motorsport Honda RS125R) in the group.

But Simoncelli crashed out on the final lap when Luthi touched his rear wheel, forcing Luthi onto the grass to avoid him. This allowed Talmacsi a clear run to the flag to take the win. Talmacsi now shares the World Championship points lead with Pasini, both with 100 points apiece. Luthi lies third with 89 after getting back on track to take 10th place.

Bautista said, “That was lots of fun. I got a good start and then there was a lot of barging and it was impossible to push alone – so I had to stay in the group. I should have made the podium, but I had to back off a bit when Simoncelli crashed.”

Luthi said, “That was a typical 125 race. Simoncelli was very fast and I had to outbrake him to get past. But he braked so late that I just touched his rear wheel. I apologized to him immediately after the race and he accepted it in a good way.”



Max BIAGGI (Repsol Honda Team)


Nicky HAYDEN (Repsol Honda Team)


Marco Melandri, Movistar Honda MotoGP, 2nd:
“I’m really happy because this is my best result in MotoGP and to have done it at this circuit is very important. It was a very tough race. At the start I was able to take the lead and stay there until halfway through the race, when I was passed by Valentino. I stayed just behind him and set a good pace but made a small mistake that cost me around eight tenths and I had to try and recover. At the end when I saw Rossi pushing so hard I decided not to risk more than necessary and took a second place which is brilliant for everybody. I want to say thanks to the team, Honda and Michelin for the great job they have done.”

Nicky Hayden, Repsol Honda, 4th:
“Its been a tough weekend really especially with the weather. This morning the track was so different so in the race we had to gamble a little. We changed the fork springs and it all felt pretty good at the start. The tyre really came in over the first few laps and I was able to make some passes. Then Rossi and Edwards came by and I had to regroup a little and in the end I got past Gibernau for a pretty lonely fourth. I know it’s the best finish this season but I really want to move on the next group – and for the whole race, not just a bit of it. I am really looking forward to putting on a good show for all the fans at Laguna in the next race.”

Sete Gibernau, Movistar Honda MotoGP, 5th :
“That was one of the worst races we’ve had recently. We didn’t do badly in practice despite the way the weekend started but I couldn’t do any more than that in the race. I almost crashed on several occassions and, luckily, we were able to finish but I can’t hide that I am tremendously dissatisfied. I hope to turn the situation around in Laguna Seca.”

Max Biaggi, Repsol Honda, 6th:
“I had no grip since the start of the race and couldn’t really get into the turns and open the throttle like I wanted to. I lost immediately too much ground and could only fight for the lower positions. We need to work harder and we need a result soon – hopefully by the next race because we have the potential to express ourselves. This is not the level that I or the team should be working at. We can do much better because we have to.”

Alex Barros, Camel Honda, 7th:
“Today’s race was frankly terrible for me, because I was never able to ride as I would have liked and as I had done up to that point. Unfortunately the tyre I chose, and the one which went well yesterday, wasn’t suited to the asphalt which was a lot colder after the overnight rain and the storms this morning. Instead, in the race I found myself without grip on the rear tyre. I chose not to take the harder tyre that Rossi, Melandri and Edwards probably used, I think Hayden maybe too, because it didn’t work for me in practice. This was an erroneous decision. I was hoping that with a few laps heating up it would have worked better, but instead I was never able to ride at the pace I did on the first two days, not even when I managed to get past the first group of riders and had a clear track ahead of me.”

Troy Bayliss, Camel Honda, 11th:
“What can I say about this race, it was average considering recent races, and despite giving everything once more I was unable to ride as well as I can. I’m obviously not happy, because there’s not much difference for me between eleventh and twentieth, but there’s not much else I can do apart from continuing to work hard with my head down and bring and end to this situation. I’m happy to be going to Laguna Seca now, a track I really like, and where I hope we can make some much-needed steps forward.”

Makoto Tamada, Konica Minolta Honda, 14th:
“After having analyzed this afternoon lap times, I couldn’t believe that I have ridden my fastest lap in 2’04, three seconds slower than the race fastest lap. From the first laps I never found the right confidence with the tyres. It seemed like the tyres never warmed up, and the first few laps I have risked to fall in a few occasions. Then things got a little better, but without a doubt I never found the right feeling to be able to push the bike to its limit. In addition, the pain in my right forearm didn’t surely help me out. I can admit that this has been the darkest day for my MotoGP career. Now we have to evaluate what to do. I surely want to be back at my best conditions, because I know I can give much more.”


MotoGP World Championship Grand Prix Round 7
Netherlands Grand Prix at Assen


line
MotoGP
1 Valentino Rossi (Gauloises Fortuna Yamaha)
2 Marco MELANDRI (Team Movistar Honda MotoGP)
3 Colin EDWARDS (Gauloises Yamaha Team)
4 Nicky HAYDEN (Repsol Honda Team)
5 Sete Gibernau (Team Movistar Honda MotoGP)
6 Max BIAGGI (Repsol Honda Team)
7 Alex BARROS (Camel Honda)
8 Shinya NAKANO (Kawasaki Racing Team)
9 Carlos Checa (Ducati Marlboro Team)
10 Loris CAPIROSSI (Ducati Marlboro Team)
11 Troy BAYLISS (Camel Honda)
12 Ruben XAUS (Fortuna Yamaha Team)
13 John HOPKINS (Team Suzuki MotoGP)
14 Makoto TAMADA (KOINICA MINOLTA Honda Team)
15 David CHECA (Fortuna Yamaha Team)



Marco MELANDRI (Team Movistar Honda MotoGP)
250cc
1 Sebastian PORTO (Aprilia Aspar 250cc)
2 Daniel PEDROSA (Telefonica Movistar Honda 250cc)
3 Jorge LORENZO (Fortuna Honda)
4 Hiroshi AOYAMA (Telefonica Movistar Honda 250)
5 Alex DE ANGELIS (MS Aprilia Italia Corse)
6 Casey STONER (Carrera Sunglasses - LCR)
7 Andrea DOVIZIOSO (Team Scot)
8 Randy DE PUNIET (Aprilia Aspar 250cc)
9 Hector BARBERA (Fortuna Honda)
10 Simone CORSI (MS Aprilia Italia Corse)
11 Roberto LOCATELLI (Carrera Sunglasses - LCR)
12 Sylvain GUINTOLI (Equipe GP de France - Scrab)
13 Alex DEBON (Wurth Honda BQR)
14 Chaz DAVIES (Aprilia Germany)
15 Yuki TAKAHASHI (Team Scot )
 
125cc
1 Gabor TALMACSI (Red Bull KTM GP125)
2 Hector FAUBEL (Master Aspar)
3 Mattia PASINI (Totti Top Sport - NGS)
4 Alvaro BAUTISTA (Seedorf RC3 - Tiempo Holidays)
5 Alexis MASBOU (Ajo Motorsport )
6 Julian SIMON (Red Bull KTM GP125)
7 Tomoyoshi KOYAMA (Ajo Motorsport)
8 Manuel POGGIALI (Metis Racing Team)
9 Sergio GADEA (Master Aspar)
10 Thomas LUTHI (Elit Grand Prix)
11 Pablo NIETO (Caja Madrid - Derbi Racing)
12 Michael RANSEDER (Red Bull ADAC KTM Juniors)
13 Joan OLIVE (Nocable.it Race)
14 Mike DI MEGLIO (Kopron Racing World)
15 Lukas PESEK (Metis Racing Team)
 

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