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MotoGP World Championship Grand Prix 2012

Round 13: San Marino

  • Overview
  • Race Results
  • Qualifying
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San Marino
San Marino
September 16, 2012

Bautista On The Podium, Pedrosa Out of Luck

The World Championship hopes of Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda RC213V) received a huge blow at the Misano Grand Prix, where the Spaniard was taken out by another rider on the very first lap.

Alvaro BAUTISTA (San Carlo Honda Gresini)zoom
Alvaro BAUTISTA (San Carlo Honda Gresini)
Stefan BRADL (LCR Honda MotoGP)zoom
Stefan BRADL (LCR Honda MotoGP)

But there was joy for Alvaro Bautista (San Carlo Honda Gresini RC213V) who scored his first-premier class podium with a stirring ride to third place behind local hero Valentino Rossi (Ducati) and winner Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha).

Stefan Bradl (LCR Honda MotoGP RC213V) enjoyed another impressive ride, the young German spending much of the race chasing Rossi before slipping back to sixth place with grip issues. Jonathan Rea (Repsol Honda RC213V) – substituting for injured champ Casey Stoner (Repsol Honda RC213V) – had an excellent MotoGP debut, finishing in eighth spot.

Expectations of another great duel between title rivals Pedrosa and Lorenzo were high as Pedrosa lined up on pole position, with just 13 points between him and the championship leader. But the start was aborted when Karel Abraham (Ducati) stalled his machine on the grid. During the preparations for the delayed start, Pedrosa’s front wheel became locked, and when the one minute board was shown his mechanics had to move the machine to pit lane to fix the problem. He was then told he had to start the race from the back row of the grid.

Already charging through the pack after his usual strong getaway from the grid, Pedrosa was hit by Hector Barbera (Ducati) at the Quercia hairpin. Neither rider was injured in the collision. However, Pedrosa’s title hopes sustained significant damage. With five rounds remaining he now sits 38 points behind Lorenzo.

Bautista’s first MotoGP podium – at his team’s home circuit – followed some crucial set-up tweaks to his RC213V, as well as a suspension upgrade from Showa. These changes allowed the Spaniard to get back to his usual all-attack riding style. Seventh at the end of the first lap, he picked off his rivals one by one, taking third place from Bradl on lap 19 of 27. On the last lap Bautista came under attack from Andrea Dovizioso (Yamaha) who dived inside at the final turn, then ran wide. The pair raced towards the finish line side by side, the difference just 0.003s.

MotoGP rookie Bradl rode another terrific race, riding in Rossi’s wheel tracks lap after lap, looking good for his first premier-class podium. In the closing stages he had Bautista and Dovizioso closing in on him and was unable to defend his position because he had run out of front-end grip.

Rea had a promising MotoGP debut, complicated by the miserable weather that dominated the three ‘free’ practice sessions. The Ten Kate World Superbike rider needed dry track time more than anyone, but on/off drizzle made sure that the circuit was not fully dry until yesterday’s qualifying session. In the difficult circumstances Rea kept his head and rode an intelligent race, learning plenty for his next MotoGP outing at Aragon in two weeks time.

Michele Pirro (San Carlo Honda Gresini FTR-Honda) completed an excellent day for Fausto Gresini’s squad, finishing in tenth place. He was the second CRT machine to cross the line.

Magnificent Marc Marquez (Team CatalunyaCaixa Repsol-Suter) once again came out on top of another thrilling race in the Honda-powered Moto2 World Championship.

Marquez and rival Pol Espargaro (Pons 40 HP Tuenti-Kalex) swapped the lead no less than five times during the last lap, Marquez finally making it stick at the turn 14 hairpin, with just two corners to go. The Spanish pair crossed the line separated by 0.359s. Italian Andrea Iannone (Speed Master – Speed Up) finished third, a further 1.2s down, after leading more than half of the race.

Marquez was brilliant as ever. He had been pushed back to fourth at one point during the early stages, but planned his race perfectly, working his way back towards the front and taking the lead from his compatriot as they attacked turn eight for the final time. Espargaro got back in front twice after that – briefly at turn ten and again at turn 13 – but whatever he did, Marquez always had the answer.

The shortened race – stopped and restarted after Gino Rea (Federal Oil Gresini Moto2-Suter) struck trouble and dropped oil on the track – gave Marquez his seventh victory of 2012 and his first hat-trick of the year. He now leads Espargaro by 53 points with five races remaining.

Iannone led the first ten laps, but in the closing stages he did not have the pace to hold off the Spaniards, so he had to be content with his fifth podium of the year.

As usual, the competition further back was just as intense, with the next six riders separated by less than 2.5 seconds. Finnish star Mika Kallio (Marc VDS Racing Team – Kalex) led the battling group from Esteve Rabat (Pons 40 HP Tuenti – Kalex), Dominique Aegerter (Technomag-CIP Suter), Scott Redding (Marc VDS Racing Team-Kalex), Bradley Smith (Tech 3 Racing – Tech 3) and Thomas Luthi (Interwetten-Paddock-Suter).

Romano Fenati (Team Italian FMI – FTR- Honda) finished third in a breathtaking Moto3 race that ended with the first seven riders covered by just 1.3s. No one had the speed to escape from the leading pack, so the result was in doubt throughout. Only in the last half lap did Sandro Cortese (KTM) gain a gap when the riders right behind him slowed themselves up in their efforts to get to the front.

After leading much of the race, Fenati dropped a few positions, then grabbed third place at the very end, getting past Maverick Vinales (Blusens Avintia – FTR Honda) and Alex Rins (Estrella Galicia 0.0 – Suter Honda). The Italian teenager crossed the line right behind runner-up Luis Salom (KTM) and 0.037s ahead of Rins who rode superbly, bravely taking second place from Salom on several occasions and setting the fastest lap along the way.

Title-challenger Vinales rode a fantastic race, fighting through the pack after starting from the third row of the grid. On the final lap it looked like the Spaniard might even score his sixth victory of the season, but in the end Cortese had too much speed and then Vinales lost three places in the final few corners. The Spanish teenager still holds second place in the championship, but 46 points behind Cortese.

Efren Vazquez (JHK T-Shirt Laglisse – FTR Honda) was also in the lead group throughout, eventually finishing a close-run seventh. Niccolo Antonelli (San Carlo Gresini – FTR Honda) went with the front-runners in the early stages, but slipped back to take eighth place, a fraction ahead of Miguel Oliveira (Estrella Galicia 0.0 – Suter Honda).

The MotoGP circus now travels back to Spain for the Aragon Grand Prix on September 30 before heading east for three flyaway races in Japan, Malaysia and Australia. The season ends at Valencia in Spain on November 11.

Jonathan REA (Repsol Honda Team)zoom
Jonathan REA (Repsol Honda Team)
Michele PIRRO (San Carlo Honda Gresini)zoom
Michele PIRRO (San Carlo Honda Gresini)


Alvaro Bautista, San Carlo Honda Gresini: 3rd
“It is always nice to finish on the podium, but especially for me today with this being my first in MotoGP. Above all this is a very special weekend for me and the team because our memories of Marco [Simoncelli] are so strong coming here to the circuit named in his honour. After a few tough races we have worked well here and managed to fight for the podium at last. I am so happy for the team and for Marco because I am sure that wherever he is right now he was pushing us along. I could feel his hand on my shoulder today and I realised at the end that my name had come loose from my leathers so you could say it was Marco that was with us today. It has been an extraordinary day and I almost crashed at the start – I picked myself up on my right elbow. I am happy for everybody who has believed in me and I want to dedicate this very special podium also to them.”
Stefan Bradl, LCR Honda MotoGP: 6th
“First of all it was a strange beginning of the race with two starts… after that, since the beginning, I was not fully confident with my front tyre and throughout the race it became worse and worse. Then in the last laps I even felt something wrong in the front, but do not know what happened exactly and must check the data with the technicians. Once I arrived at the garage we noticed that I had very low front tyre pressure and we are going to investigate later. In those conditions I was not capable to stop the bike on braking so I was losing the position. It’s very frustrating because we were in a good shape and I could gain my first MotoGP podium, but I have to take the positive aspect of the weekend. We are capable to stay up in the pack and we will try our best in Aragon. I want to thank the whole team because this race was very busy for them and once again they made an excellent job.”
Jonathan Rea, Repsol Honda: 8th
“It was a tough race and I just wanted to get into a rhythm and maintain it. I'm still nowhere near the limit. I'm not really having any moments, just a few mistakes running wide. It's a matter of trust and I'm still acclimatising to the machine. I'm really happy with the progress I made throughout the race and I learnt so much that you simply can't pick up in testing – how the tyre wear goes down, the fuel load and how the bike behaves differently. In the beginning Nicky pulled a gap and then I was catching him, but in the end it wasn't enough. To finish eighth is okay, but the gap to the front is a little frustrating. In general I'm really happy and I'm looking forward to the next challenge in Aragon. I want to thank all the Repsol Honda team for their hard work and support they've given me and to all the fans back home.”
Michel Pirro, San Carlo Honda Gresini: 10th
“After a few difficult weekends we have had a good day here and a wonderful weekend where Marco's presence could really be felt. I am so happy that at his home circuit we have been able to get back on the right track and I hope we can get more results like this between now and the end of the season. Unfortunately in the race I lost a little time behind Hernandez otherwise I could have been much closer to de Puniet. Anyway I am happy for me and the team, who have worked with so much determination. It has been a wonderful and emotional day.”
Dani Pedrosa, Repsol Honda: DNF
“It was total chaos and many things happened at the same time. It all began with the restart because the procedure was not at all clear. Nobody knew if it was one minute, three minutes, warmers on or off… We were also getting different information about the number of laps, 26, 27… Then suddenly we were told it was one minute to the start of the race, with no board signage, nothing. The mechanics were rushing to prepare and when they tried to take off the warmers my front wheel was somehow locked. They tried to unlock it, but they weren't able to and due to the one minute warning – where they are not allowed to touch the bike anymore – they put me to the back of the grid. I tried to remain focused, not make any mistakes on the first lap, make clear moves to overtake riders and I was eighth or ninth when Barberá hit me from behind, and that was it. I'm very upset because even if it's easy to say now, I think I could have had a chance to win this race, even starting from last place on the grid. Now the championship is obviously more uphill for me, but I will continue the same way. We have done everything we could so far, the bike is working well and I'm riding well, too. So it's not over for me; there are still 5 races to go and we will do our best.”


Marc Marquez, Team CatalunyaCaixa Repsol-Suter: 1st
“I liked winning like that, above all because of how I planned the race. I knew that I could be out in front, but in the warm-up I found it a little difficult to ride and I didn't have the required pace. We didn't know if the tyres would last the race. I came close to crashing, which lost me a little concentration. At that moment Pol and Tito [Rabat] got ahead of me and someone else almost came past as well. Being such a short race, it was difficult to think calmly. That led to such a tense finale. I tried to regain ground by riding on the limit every lap and when I finally caught Pol, I tried to overtake him at the first braking point where there was an opportunity. I think that it was a nice battle for the fans to watch. Every time under the brakes I tried to leave it as late as possible and so did he. I was able to get into the final corners and close the door each time. It was an important win, because Pol has always been fast here."
Pol Espargaro, Pons 40 HP Tuenti-Kalex: 2nd
“I’m a little disappointed because when you fight for the victory and you don’t get it, you don’t feel perfect. But we got a lot of points today and we are second in the championship. Now we have to work to try and beat Marc at the next race. The last lap today was fun for the fans but I’m disappointed with the way it ended for me – Marc was so good at braking and very aggressive.”
Andrea Iannone, Speed Master-Speed Up: 3rd
“This was a very difficult race. I tried to get away from the beginning, because after the first start we realised that we hadn’t made the best choice for the gearbox and it was tough to stay with Espargaró and Marquez. In the second race I tried to create a gap, but it wasn’t easy. Marc and Pol came up behind me and I lost the advantage we had. We’re again on the podium and that’s always a positive result. Now we’ll see how Aragón goes and let’s hope for another good weekend.”


Romano Fenati, Team Italian FMI – FTR- Honda: 3rd
“I tried to bring home my second victory in the World Championship, but we are equally satisfied with the podium because at the end of the race my tyres were very worn. I stayed with the front runners and at the end I used a little 'imagination’ and took advantage of the brawl between Rins and Vinales to ‘invent’ a third-place finish. This result satisfies me a lot and I want to dedicate this result to my team, Honda and RDF are all the people working for me. I would like to thank all the staff of the Medical Centre at Misano who supported me very well after a bad fall on a Friday. Now we go to Aragon where I have raced in the Spanish championship. I like the track a lot and I know I can do my best to consolidate fourth place in the championship.”
Alex Rins, Estrella Galicia 0.0 – Suter Honda: 4th
“I am happy. It was a pretty tough race, because we started from low down on the grid, but gradually we got into the race and were able to join the leading group. I felt comfortable on the bike and moved up positions until I got to the top riders. We had a good pace for the entire race, but on the last five laps Cortese got away. That was mostly due to his engine, because he was leaving us behind on the straights. In general, I am satisfied. Regarding the incident with Maverick, I apologise to him and his team, despite the fact that I think I made a clean move.”
Maverick Vinales, Blusens Avintia – FTR Honda: 5th
“I got a good start, but during the opening corners I got clipped by another rider and I lost places. From that moment on I refocused and made a steady comeback, moving up to second by the time the final lap came around. I had a shot at victory, I tried and thought that I could close the gap on the straight, but it wasn't to be. I couldn't do anything more, because on the back straight I was losing half a second. I am happy, because I gave my all and we regained a lot of places in the race. I can't ask for more, because I gave 100 per cent.”
Alvaro BAUTISTA (San Carlo Honda Gresini)zoom
Alvaro BAUTISTA (San Carlo Honda Gresini)

MotoGP World Championship Grand Prix
Round 13: San Marino

Rank Rider (Team)
1 Jorge LORENZO (Yamaha Factory Racing)
2 Valentino ROSSI (Ducati Team)
3 Alvaro BAUTISTA (San Carlo Honda Gresini)
4 Andrea DOVIZIOSO (Monster Yamaha Tech 3)
5 Ben SPIES (Yamaha Factory Racing)
6 Stefan BRADL (LCR Honda MotoGP)
7 Nicky HAYDEN (Ducati Team)
8 Jonathan REA (Repsol Honda Team)
9 Randy DE PUNIET (Power Electronics Aspar)
10 Michele PIRRO (San Carlo Honda Gresini)
11 Colin EDWARDS (NGM Mobile Forward Racing)
12 Yonny HERNANDEZ (Avintia Blusens)
13 James ELLISON (Paul Bird Motorsport)
14 Danilo PETRUCCI (Came IodaRacing Project)
15 David SALOM (Avintia Blusens)
Rank Rider (Team)
1 Marc MARQUEZ (Team CatalunyaCaixa Repsol)
2 Pol ESPARGARO (Pons 40 HP Tuenti)
3 Andrea IANNONE (Speed Master)
4 Mika KALLIO (Marc VDS Racing Team)
5 Esteve RABAT (Pons 40 HP Tuenti)
6 Dominique AEGERTER (Technomag-CIP)
7 Scott REDDING (Marc VDS Racing Team)
8 Bradley SMITH (Tech 3 Racing)
9 Thomas LUTHI (Interwetten-Paddock)
10 Johann ZARCO (JIR Moto2)
11 Takaaki NAKAGAMI (Italtrans Racing Team)
12 Julian SIMON (Blusens Avintia)
13 Alex DE ANGELIS (NGM Mobile Forward Racing)
14 Claudio CORTI (Italtrans Racing Team)
15 Nicolas TEROL (Mapfre Aspar Team Moto2)
Rank Rider (Team)
1 Sandro CORTESE (Red Bull KTM Ajo)
2 Luis SALOM (RW Racing GP)
3 Romano FENATI (Team Italia FMI)
4 Alex RINS (Estrella Galicia 0,0)
5 Maverick VINALES (Blusens Avintia)
6 Jonas FOLGER (Mapfre Aspar Team Moto3)
7 Efren VAZQUEZ (JHK t-shirt Laglisse)
8 Niccolo` ANTONELLI (San Carlo Gresini Moto3)
9 Miguel OLIVEIRA (Estrella Galicia 0,0)
10 Arthur SISSIS (Red Bull KTM Ajo)
11 Zulfahmi KHAIRUDDIN (AirAsia-Sic-Ajo)
12 Danny KENT (Red Bull KTM Ajo)
13 Hector FAUBEL (Mapfre Aspar Team Moto3)
14 Alberto MONCAYO (Andalucia JHK t-shirt Laglisse)
15 Jakub KORNFEIL (Redox-Ongetta-Centro Seta)

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