MotoGP > MotoGP 2008 Round 12: Czech Republic GP > Race Results
F1Czech RepublicAugust 17, 2008
MotoGP World Championship Grand Prix Round 12
Czech Republic Grand Prix at Brno

Rossi Wins, Stoner Falls, No Grip For Pedrosa

Qualifying >>

Valentino Rossi (Yamaha) put one hand on the 2008 World Championship here at Brno when he won from Toni Elias (Ducati) with seasoned campaigner Loris Capirossi (Suzuki) third.

Shinya NAKANO (San Carlo Honda Gresini)

Alex DE ANGELIS (San Carlo Honda Gresini)

With Casey Stoner (Ducati) falling on lap seven and failing to score, and with Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda RC212V) collecting just one point for a gutsy 15th place riding with little grip and even less confidence from poorly performing tyres, Rossi has all but secured the title. With six rounds left and holding a 50-point lead, it is effectively now his to lose.

Stoner romped into the lead from pole as extinguished lights signalled the start of a 22-lap race around the majestic dips and curves of this 5.403km woodland circuit. Hopkins and Rossi chased him from the front row with Rossi eventually getting the better of the unyielding Hopkins for second.

Dani had powered from 12th on the grid to sixth from the start, his trademark rapid launch serving him well after qualifying so low. But as the pace hotted up it was abundantly clear his rubber was not up to the demands of this newly resurfaced track and he dropped back lap by lap.

Anthony West (Kawasaki) moved up to fourth from sixth on the grid as Stoner established a 0.6 second lead by the halfway point of lap one. By the end of that opening lap it was a 1.1 second lead and Rossi was giving it everything to stay in touch with the flying Aussie.

Dani was hanging onto sixth but by lap two he’d slipped back to eighth. There was nothing he could do about abject lack of grip, from his front tyre in particular. All the Michelin riders were suffering here to a degree not seen before in MotoGP.

By lap four Rossi had stabilised Stoner’s lead. Having pushed his advantage to 1.3 seconds Stoner now had to find more to put distance between his Ducati and the chasing Rossi. He found it with a fastest lap on lap five, but on lap seven Stoner’s title challenge derailed.

He lost the front end of his machine, tumbled into the gravel, and despite frantic efforts to restart and rejoin the race he parked his bike and trudged back to the pits. Randy de Puniet (LCR Honda RC212V) also crashed on this lap but managed to get back on track to finish the race in 16th place.

Rossi now led the Suzukis of Chris Vermeulen and Loris Capirossi by 12 seconds. There was no way he was going to be caught and, with no pressure from title rivals, unlikely he would make an error. Sure enough he kept his composure to win by 15 seconds from Elias.

There was action aplenty downfield. Andrea Dovizioso (JiR Scot Honda RC212V) had hoisted himself to seventh, Shinya Nakano (San Carlo Honda Gresini RC212V) lay ninth and Alex de Angelis (San Carlo Honda Gresini RC212V) tenth, while a four-rider fight for fourth ensued.

Capirossi, Vermeulen, Hopkins and the rapid Elias were battling it out before it became clear that Elias had the measure of them all. He eased away to secure second while a hard-charging Nakano hauled himself up from seventh mid-race to fourth at the flag, and highest Honda finisher.

Dovizioso was the highest-placed Michelin-shod Honda rider in ninth place, one place behind De Angelis. Nicky Hayden (Repsol Honda RC212V) did not ride this weekend after injuring his foot at the Los Angeles X Games earlier this month.

Rossi now has 237 points, Stoner 187 and Dani 172. The next round of six remaining is at San Marino, Italy on the weekend of August 31st.

250cc Grand Prix
Alex Debon (Aprilia) took a finely judged win ahead of Alvaro Bautista (Aprilia) who was second and Marco Simoncelli (Derbi) who was relegated to third after being in the hunt for the win for much of this 20-lap race.

Simoncelli led into turn one before Thomas Luthi (Aprilia) stole past him to exploit an open track. Luthi would then drop back a place before crashing out while trying to hold second place. The race then became a Debon, Bautsista, Simoncelli show as they headed Mika Kallio (KTM) and Hector Barbera (Aprilia) in fourth and fifth by 1.5 seconds with five laps to go.

Yuki Takahashi (JiR Scot Honda RS250RW) finished a strong sixth, nudging ahead of Mattia Pasini (Aprilia) as they crossed the line. Ratthapark Wilairot (Thai Honda PTT SAG RS250RW) rode to 11th after starting from 20th on the grid.

The World Championship points table now shows Simoncelli out in front with 180 points to the 164 of Mika Kallio, who was fifth here today. Debon lies third with 139 points and Bautista is fourth on 138.

125cc Grand Prix
Stefan Bradl (Aprilia) won the first Grand Prix of his career ahead of World Championship points leader Mike Di Meglio who finished second and Joan Olive in third (both Derbi). Bradl’s father Helmut won here on a 250cc Honda in 1991.

Bradley Smith (Aprilia) launched off the line to head the pack into turn one but as early as lap three Bradl took charge of this 19-lap race and always looked as if he’d be in the mix for the podium places at the end. So it proved.

By mid-race Bradl set a fastest lap of 2m 08.923s and barring any lapses in concentration or mechanical disasters it was his race. Di Meglio collected useful points in second while Olive deprived Hungarian ‘local’ Gabor Talmacsi (Aprilia) of a podium.

Di Meglio heads the World Championship with 186 points to the 142 of Simone Corsi (Aprilia) who finished tenth here today. Bradl is third with 126 points and reigning World Champion Talmacsi fourth with 122.

Andrea DOVIZIOSO (JiR Team Scot MotoGP)

Yuki TAKAHASHI (JiR Team Scot 250)

Shinya Nakano, San Carlo Gresini Honda: 4th.
“We took another step forward with the new bike today although I have to say that it has not been easy to get this result. We came to Brno without any test data but the team did a great job with the set-up. I want to thank Honda and Team Gresini for giving me the chance to ride this bike, which represents a great opportunity for me to improve on the results we’ve managed so far. I’m just disappointed that I lost positions at the start because I made contact with another rider but at the same time satisfied to have recovered and finished the race in fourth – a result I can be pleased with.”

Alex De Angelis, San Carlo Gresini Honda: 8th.
“Even I finished the race as the best of the RC212V satellite riders today’s result isn’t too satisfying because we were expecting to finish in the top six. We weren’t too far off that target but this wasn’t the race we’d imagined. Unfortunately after the first lap, when I lost several positions, I made several passes but lost the position to other riders who were faster down the straights. Tomorrow we’ll make the most of the test here at Brno to continue to improve ahead of the San Marino Grand Prix, which is of special importance to me.”

Andrea Dovizioso, JiR Scot Honda: 9th.
"My goal for the race was to be the first Michelin rider home, which is what I have achieved, but things were too difficult to do better. I started fully motivated and wanting to give the maximum and exploit fully the material at our disposal, but today I cannot be satisfied with the result. I had difficulty with the front tyre and was forced to change my style of riding, which meant not being able to exploit my speed in the corners. I had to stop hard and fire the bike out of the corners, rather than have a smoother style. This difficulty penalised us in the race."

Dani Pedrosa, Repsol Honda: 15th.
“This weekend has been a complete disaster. Today’s race was the probably worst of my career. In fact I couldn’t even race today, all I could do was ride. I couldn’t control the bike, I didn’t feel safe. I was riding so slow, I felt impotent and ashamed. I considered stopping but I stayed out there to get some points. We really need a drastic improvement from the tyres. I had no grip at the front and no grip at the rear, from the first lap to the last. It was therefore impossible for me to push any harder, even though I was going very slow, three or four seconds slower than the leader. I almost crashed twice, so I just tried to finish the race. I did my best in very difficult circumstances, at the end the tyre performance was even worse than it had been during the early laps.”

Randy De Puniet, LCR Honda: 16th.
“Honestly I’m very angry. I made a good start but couldn’t race as I wanted and was struggling a lot for front-end feel. Many riders passed me in the corner entries and in the first laps I lost the front a few times. So I decided to slow down but the feeling with the front was very bad. When I tried to pass Pedrosa in the chicane I crashed out in the gravel but rejoined the race. I suffered the same crash of Friday afternoon and, although my crew worked hard to find a solution, we did not solve the problem with the front tyre.”

Nicky Hayden, Repsol Honda:
Will did race due to injuries sustained at X Games Supermoto event in Los Angeles on August 1.

Yuki Takahashi, JiR Scot Honda: 6th.
"I am very satisfied with the result today, because I have taken important points for the standings and I gave my very maximum in the race. I started well but in the third corner I ended up on the dirt and in danger of crashing, this made me lose time and I was down in eleventh position. It was difficult, but I never gave up and on the last lap I reached Pasini and I managed to pass him before the chequered flag. It was an important weekend for the team and I, because we continually improved and the result today motivates us to continue to do so. We are all encouraged now to do as best we can the next Grand Prix at Misano, my 'second home race' because I live in Italy near the circuit. I thank the team today that has done an excellent job over the whole weekend."

Ratthapark Wilairot, Thai Honda PTT SAG: 11th.
“It was a strange weekend, practice sessions were really complicated because of the rainy weather and a lack of feeling with the bike, I was suffering until I thought I would not qualify. Today everything changed a lot, I’ve made a good start, but in the first five laps it was difficult for me to pass Fabrizio Lai because he rode at a slow pace but he braked very late, and this fact made it complicated for me to pass him. Finally I’ve got passed and I got to finish the race in 11th position, for this I’m really happy and I am pleased with my the whole team who have worked very hard and never lost the trust in me to have a good race.”

Louis Rossi, FFM Honda: 29th.
“This race was pretty hard as this was my first time on this difficult racetrack. Insofar as we had a lot of rain during the practice session, I was missing riding in dry conditions. Nonetheless during the race I improved by 3.5 seconds on my qualifying time, which is enormous. I had a good start and was part of a group with Alexis Masbou, Robert Muresan, Hugo Van den Berg and Bastien Chesaux. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to keep up with them until the end of the race. I had some chattering when leaned over with my Honda and I failed to keep up. It’s a real shame but I wasn’t able to catch up with them.”

MotoGP World Championship Round 12
Czech Republic Grand Prix at Brno

1 Valentino ROSSI (Fiat Yamaha Team)
2 Toni ELIAS (Alice Team)
3 Loris CAPIROSSI (Rizla Suzuki MotoGP)
4 Shinya NAKANO (San Carlo Honda Gresini)
5 Anthony WEST (Kawasaki Racing Team)
6 Chris VERMEULEN (Rizla Suzuki MotoGP)
7 Marco MELANDRI (Ducati Marlboro Team)
8 Alex DE ANGELIS (San Carlo Honda Gresini)
9 Andrea DOVIZIOSO (JiR Team Scot MotoGP)
10 Jorge LORENZO (Fiat Yamaha Team)
11 John HOPKINS (Kawasaki Racing Team)
12 Sylvain GUINTOLI (Alice Team)
13 James TOSELAND (Tech 3 Yamaha)
14 Colin EDWARDS (Tech 3 Yamaha)
15 Dani PEDROSA (Repsol Honda Team)
1 Alex DEBON (Lotus Aprilia)
2 Alvaro BAUTISTA (Mapfre Aspar Team)
3 Marco SIMONCELLI (Metis Gilera)
4 Hector BARBERA (Team Toth Aprilia)
5 Mika KALLIO (Red Bull KTM 250)
6 Yuki TAKAHASHI (JiR Team Scot 250)
7 Mattia PASINI (Polaris World)
8 Hector FAUBEL (Mapfre Aspar Team)
9 Roberto LOCATELLI (Metis Gilera)
10 Aleix ESPARGARO (Lotus Aprilia)
11 Ratthapark WILAIROT (Thai Honda PTT SAG)
12 Julian SIMON (Repsol KTM 250cc)
13 Hiroshi AOYAMA (Red Bull KTM 250)
14 Lukas PESEK (Auto Kelly - CP)
15 Alex BALDOLINI (Matteoni Racing)
1 Stefan BRADL (Grizzly Gas Kiefer Racing)
2 Mike DI MEGLIO (Ajo Motorsport)
3 Joan OLIVE (Belson Derbi)
4 Gabor TALMACSI (Bancaja Aspar Team)
5 Nicolas TEROL (Jack & Jones WRB)
6 Bradley SMITH (Polaris World)
7 Sandro CORTESE (Emmi - Caffe Latte)
8 Pol ESPARGARO (Belson Derbi)
9 Andrea IANNONE (I.C. Team)
10 Simone CORSI (Jack & Jones WRB)
11 Scott REDDING (Blusens Aprilia Junior)
12 Sergio GADEA (Bancaja Aspar Team)
13 Esteve RABAT (Repsol KTM 125cc)
14 Dominique AEGERTER (Ajo Motorsport)
15 Robin LASSER (Grizzly Gas Kiefer Racing)

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