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MotoGP World Championship Grand Prix 2013

Round 09: U.S.A.

  • Overview
  • Race Results
  • Qualifying
  • Photo
July 21, 2013

Honda First and Second in Laguna Seca Triumph

Repsol Honda RC213V rider Marc Marquez continued his record-breaking maiden MotoGP season with a second successive race win in today’s US GP. It is the 20-year-old’s third win in nine races, and extends his points lead in the World Championship. He now leads team-mate Dani Pedrosa by 16 points.

Marc MARQUEZ (Repsol Honda Team)zoom
Marc MARQUEZ (Repsol Honda Team)
Stefan BRADL (LCR Honda MotoGP)zoom
Stefan BRADL (LCR Honda MotoGP)

For Honda, it was the third win in succession at the charismatic Californian circuit, and the sixth in nine visits in the current series of the race.

Honda secured second place as well, with a fine first podium finish for Stefan Bradl, Marquez’s old Moto2 rival and fellow former Moto2 champion. The German LCR Honda RC213V rider had started from his first pole position, and led to beyond the halfway point of the 32-lap race.

Third Honda rider Alvaro Bautista (Team GO&FUN Honda Gresini RC213V) missed making it an all-Honda rostrum by less than a tenth of a second, hounding former Laguna winner Valentino Rossi (Yamaha) over the finish line.

It was a heroic afternoon for Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda RC213V). Riding with a partial collarbone fracture, he finished a strong fifth, claiming valuable points to preserve his second place in the championship at the mid-point of the season. The plucky ride stretched his lead over third-placed Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha) to ten points.

The race, round the shortest circuit of the year, had both tension and drama for 46,000 spectators, enjoying perfect Californian sunshine at the track in the hills inland from fashionable Monterey.

Bradl made a perfect start to lead the first 18 laps. In the early stages he secured a margin of almost two seconds, but after four laps Marquez was through to second, and gradually closed up.

The German was eventually obliged to give best after his rival demonstrated better edge-grip in the sinuous Californian circuit’s many turns, but continued lapping at close to record pace to claim his first rostrum, and a career-best second place.

Marquez showed little sign that he was still learning the intricacies of the complex and physically gruelling short circuit. He seized second from Rossi on the fourth lap with a forceful passing move at the famous Corkscrew corner, replicating one of the Italian champion’s own famous attacks. Thereafter he concentrated on catching and following Bradl, before seizing his moment for a clean overtake and the chance to open a gap still better than 2.2 seconds as he coasted across the line.

Bautista was disappointed that his sustained efforts to pass Rossi for his own first rostrum this year were thwarted, but pleased with his best result so far, demonstrating how the exclusive Showa suspension test rider is regaining strength after two first-lap crashes earlier this season.

Pedrosa demonstrated grit and skill in equal measure in a weekend of endurance. Still suffering a partial fracture to his left collarbone sustained in a crash that ruled him out of last weekend’s German GP, the Spaniard sat out the morning practice sessions and started from the third row of the grid. Through the race however he gained speed, and eventually outpaced third placed title rival Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha), who was riding with his own collarbone injury.

Grand prix rookie Bryan Staring (Team GO&FUN Honda Gresini FTR Honda) finished 17th, his hopes of adding to his points score thwarted in the later laps. Series first-timer Staring rides in the CRT category, his machine powered by a race-tuned CBR1000RR motor.

The US GP marks the end of the first half of the 2013 season, followed by the summer break of three weekends. Racing resumes in the United States on August 16-18 at the famous Indianapolis Motor Speedway for the Indianapolis GP, third round of the year in the USA. This is followed by a rapid return to Europe with races in the Czech Republic and Great Britain over the following two weekends.

Alvaro BAUTISTA (GO&FUN Honda Gresini)zoom
Alvaro BAUTISTA (GO&FUN Honda Gresini)
Dani PEDROSA (Repsol Honda Team)zoom
Dani PEDROSA (Repsol Honda Team)


Marc Marquez, Repsol Honda: 1st
“I am very happy, because we weren’t expecting this result from our first visit to Laguna Seca. I didn’t think I would adapt so easily to such a tricky circuit, but from the first day of practice I felt very comfortable and quickly found the best lines. Today I was a little cautious at the start, because with a full tank it is easy to make a mistake, but when the tyres got up to temperature I was able to maintain the pace from practice. I overtook Valentino in a similar spot to where he passed Casey in 2008, although the passes were a little different because his was more spectacular! Later I was able to pass Stefan after studying him for a number of laps, and then I tried to build a gap in order to win the race by a comfortable margin.”
Stefan Bradl, LCR Honda MotoGP: 2nd
“It’s a great result for us. We did a good job all across the weekend. Of course expectations were high after I had pole yesterday, but I knew I had good speed and that I could be fast from the beginning. I tried to push from the start and I think I did that very well. I struggled a little bit. I thought the race speed would be a little quicker but, with the full tank of fuel, I had a few problems with the front. When he caught me I saw that he had some more edge grip on the tyre and that he was able to open up a gap. I just tried to manage the gap to Valentino (Rossi), which was not easy, and it was a long and tough race.”
Alvaro Bautista, Team FUN&GO Honda Gresini: 4th
“I was so close to the podium! I would really like to have been up there but we have to be happy with this result and especially for the way we achieved it. Obviously you can’t get much closer than 0.059 seconds but the most important thing about today was that we showed we have taken a massive step forward and hopefully we can continue in the same way at the next race. This result gives us confidence after a less than positive period and it’s a nice boost for the rest of the season. I am also happy for the team, who have been working so hard and really deserved to celebrate a result like this today.”
Dani Pedrosa, Repsol Honda: 5th, 1’21.728
“First of all, I want to thank everyone who has supported me over these past few days. This was a race in which it was very important to take points. I was seriously considering sitting out this race, because the conditions were very difficult, so I am very happy to have taken fifth. We were close to the podium, but on the final laps I found things very hard. I think that I held up well in the race, although I was in a lot of pain the entire weekend. At least I was able to grip the handlebars and control the bike. A lot of times moving the bike makes it tough for you and it is difficult to ride a long race. In the end, the 11 points are very important for the championship.”
Bryan Staring, Team FUN&GO Honda Gresini: 17th
“I am happy because today went better than recent races. I set a fast pace in the first half of the race and I was fighting for a points position but after not being able to train recently because of my foot injury I started to really struggle from a physical perspective later in the race. We have taken steps forward here though and that will help us in the coming races.”
Marc MARQUEZ (Repsol Honda Team) & Stefan BRADL (LCR Honda MotoGP)zoom
Marc MARQUEZ (Repsol Honda Team) & Stefan BRADL (LCR Honda MotoGP)

MotoGP World Championship Grand Prix
Round 09: U.S.A.

Rank Rider (Team)
1 Marc MARQUEZ (Repsol Honda Team)
2 Stefan BRADL (LCR Honda MotoGP)
3 Valentino ROSSI (Yamaha Factory Racing)
4 Alvaro BAUTISTA (GO&FUN Honda Gresini)
5 Dani PEDROSA (Repsol Honda Team)
6 Jorge LORENZO (Yamaha Factory Racin)
7 Cal CRUTCHLOW ( Monster Yamaha Tech 3)
8 Nicky HAYDEN (Ducati Team)
9 Andrea DOVIZIOSO (Ducati Team)
10 Hector BARBERA (Avintia Blusens)
11 Alex DE ANGELIS (Ignite Pramac Racing)
12 Colin EDWARDS (NGM Mobile Forward Racing)
13 Danilo PETRUCCI (Came IodaRacing Project)
14 Karel ABRAHAM (Cardion AB Motoracing)
15 Yonny HERNANDEZ (Paul Bird Motorsport)

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