Oct 20, 2013
© 2013, Roadracing World Publishing, Inc.
by David Swarts
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A map of the Phillip Island circuit.
FIM MotoGP World Championship
Phillip Island, Australia
October 20, 2013
Race Results (all on Bridgestone tires):
1. Jorge LORENZO, Spain (YAMAHA), 19 laps, 29:07.155
2. Dani PEDROSA, Spain (HONDA), -6.936 seconds
3. Valentino ROSSI, Italy (YAMAHA), -12.344
4. Cal CRUTCHLOW, UK (YAMAHA), -12.460
5. Alvaro BAUTISTA, Spain (HONDA), -12.513
6. Bradley SMITH, UK (YAMAHA), -28.263
7. Nicky HAYDEN, USA (DUCATI), -32.953
8. Andrea IANNONE, Italy (DUCATI), -35.062
9. Andrea DOVIZIOSO, Italy (DUCATI), -35.104
10. Randy DE PUNIET, France (ART-Aprilia), -37.426
11. Aleix ESPARGARO, Spain (ART-Aprilia), -46.099
12. Colin EDWARDS, USA (FTR-Kawasaki), -48.149
13. Yonny HERNANDEZ, Colombia (DUCATI), -49.911
14. Hector BARBERA, Spain (FTR-Kawasaki), -49.998
15. Danilo PETRUCCI, Italy (IODA/SUTER-BMW), -58.718
16. Luca SCASSA, Italy (ART-Aprilia), -58.791
17. Claudio CORTI, Italy (FTR-Kawasaki), -68.105
18. Michael LAVERTY, UK (ART-Aprilia), -87.230
19. Lukas PESEK, Czech Republic (IODA/SUTER-BMW), -91.093
20. Hiroshi AOYAMA, Japan (FTR-Kawasaki), -1 lap
21. Damian CUDLIN, Australia (PBM-Aprilia), -2 laps
Bryan STARING, Australia (FTR HONDA)
Marc MARQUEZ, Spain (HONDA)
World Championship Point Standings (after 16 of 18 races):
1. Marquez, 298 points
2. Lorenzo, 280
3. Pedrosa 264
4. Rossi, 214
5. Crutchlow, 179
6. Bautista, 147
7. Bradl, 135
8. Dovizioso, 127
9. Hayden, 111
10. Smith, 99
11. Espargaro, 88
12. Iannone, 55
13. Michele Pirro, 50
14. Edwards, 36
15. De Puniet, 33
16. Barbera, 31
17. Petrucci, 24
18. Hernandez, 20
19. Aoyama, 13
20. Corti, 11
21. Ben Spies, 9
22. TIE, Alex De Angelis/Karel Abraham, 5
24. Laverty, 3
25. Staring, 2
26. Javier Del Amor, 1
More, from a press release issued by Bridgestone:
Lorenzo comes out on top in thrilling Australian Grand Prix
Round 16: Australian MotoGP™ - Race
Phillip Island, Sunday 20 October 2013
Bridgestone slick compounds available: Front: Extra-soft & Soft. Rear: Medium & Hard (Asymmetric)
Bridgestone wet tyre compounds available: Soft (Main) & Hard (Alternative)
Weather: Dry. Ambient 26-27°C; Track 30-32°C (Bridgestone measurement)
Yamaha Factory Racing’s Jorge Lorenzo won a dramatic flag-to-flag Australian Grand Prix at Phillip Island to breathe life back into his championship challenge.
With the race reduced to nineteen laps with a mandatory stop where riders were required to change bikes, Lorenzo led the opening stint before making a flawless pit stop on lap nine to put himself in a strong position for the second half of the race. Once on his second bike Lorenzo pulled away from the chasing pack to take the chequered flag by 6.936 seconds ahead of second-place getter, Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa. Rounding out the rostrum was Yamaha Factory Racing’s Valentino Rossi who claimed his sixth podium of the season in Australia. Having shown great pace throughout the race weekend, the top CRT rider in Australia was Power Electronics Aspar’s Randy de Puniet who placed tenth in Australia. Amid the excitement of today’s race, a new Circuit Record Lap of 1’28.108 was set on the thirteenth lap of the race by Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez.
Conditions today were dry but cooler than yesterday, with the peak track temperature of 32°C recorded at the start of the race. With the harder of the two rear slick options – the medium compound for CRT riders and the hard compound for works riders - being made mandatory for the race, the only variation in tyre choice came from the front slicks. Eleven of the twenty-three starters chose the softer front option, the extra-soft front slick, with the other twelve riders opting for the harder option, soft compound front.
With two rounds remaining, Repsol Honda’s Marc Marquez still leads the championship standings by eighteen points – despite being black flagged for not pitting in the mandatory stop window in today’s race – over Lorenzo. Pedrosa remains in third place in the championship, sixteen points adrift of Lorenzo.
Shinji Aoki – Manager, Bridgestone Motorsport Tyre Development Department
“Today was quite an exciting contest that passed without incident and I would like to congratulate all the teams and riders for working so hard to adapt what was a unique race situation. After warm-up, we analysed the tyres of the riders to see how they fared during the long runs they did this morning and it was evident that we had to reduce the maximum running time of the rear slicks to ten laps. Considering this new information, we had discussions with the FIM, Dorna and IRTA regarding the situation, after which race direction decided a flag-to-flag race with a nineteen lap duration was the best option. We have arranged for the used tyres from this weekend to be transported immediately to our technical centre in Japan for detailed analysis which will be the first step in developing new tyres for future MotoGP races at Phillip Island.”
Jorge Lorenzo, Yamaha Factory Racing – Race Winner
“Today was a crazy race with us having to the change of bikes in the middle of the contest. We practiced a lot before the race to find the best way to swap between bikes and this helped me a lot in the race. Twenty-five points is the best result possible and is good for the championship and I hope we can still be challenging for the title at the last race in Valencia.”
More, from a press release issued by Repsol Honda:
Second place for Pedrosa as black flag terminates race for Marquez
It has been a remarkable day in Phillip Island for the MotoGP paddock, especially the Repsol Honda Team.
After Race Direction last night changed the format of today's twenty-seven lap race due to tyre issues, this morning, the rules changed once again after more troubles in warm up. The new format dictated a new race distance of nineteen laps with a mandatory change of bikes at least once during the race. Riders were also not permitted to complete more than ten laps on any one rear tyre, meaning they had to change machine at the end of lap nine or lap ten.
The race began well and Championship leader Marc Marquez held second position from the start, behind pole man Lorenzo. Teammate Dani Pedrosa had a fantastic start jumping from 5th to 3rd by the first turn. The three Spanish riders raced hard for the first nine laps and Dani was the first to pit at the end of lap nine. At the end of lap ten, race leader Lorenzo entered the pits - along with the majority of riders - but Marc did not follow, instead completing lap ten and then entering the pits before passing the line of lap eleven. Marc rejoined the circuit as Lorenzo came through turn one and slotted into second.
However, shortly after Marc rejoining the race, he was shown the black flag - meaning instant disqualification - as he had exceeded the lap limit as set out in Race Direction's earlier instructions. The team made a mistake, understanding he was able to complete ten laps and come back in before completing lap eleven, and the 'BOX' instruction on his pit board was therefore one lap late.
Dani also experienced some drama after he slightly crossed the white line before the end of the filter lane when rejoining the race after his pit stop. He was ordered to relinquish a position, letting Marc pass him before being shown the black flag. He held ont o second position comfortably but was unable to chase down Lorenzo in the final laps. Marc retains his Championship lead on 298, but it's been cut to just 18 points with two races remaining with Lorenzo on 280. Dani is now on 264, 34 points off his teammate.
Dani Pedrosa 2nd Championship Standing: 3rd - 264 points
“Today's race was very stressful -above all before the start, as the rules were being changed every five minutes. Everything was turned on its head and it was very difficult to adapt first time, without making any mistakes. Marc made mistakes and I did too. Everything was going so fast and it was confusing for both the riders and the mechanics. We had to be clear about which lap to enter the pits, as it wasn't obvious which was lap 9 and which was lap 10. The two bikes needed to be prepared and the tyres as well, the pit lane was much longer than normal... it was all so strange today. The exit line from the pits wasn't clear, and neither could you see the entry line very well, so it was all a bit improvised. In my case I was able to rectify my mistake on the track and, although the se cond bike wasn't the same for me as the first, I managed to take second in the race and be very competitive"
Marc Marquez DNF Championship Standing: 1st - 298 points
“Today was our first experience of a Flag-to-Flag race, and suffice to say it wasn't a good one. My team and I had set out a strategy and we thought that we could come in after lap 10, but in reality this counts as an extra lap. We hadn't had that in mind and this was a huge mistake. We had everything well planned and I followed the instructions on my pit board. You learn from these things though, so now we have to move on and focus on the race in Japan"
More, from a press release issued by Yamaha Factory MotoGP Team:
Lorenzo Scores 50th Grand Prix Victory in Phillip Island Thriller
Phillip Island (Australia), 20th october 2013
Defending world champion Jorge Lorenzo delivered a stunning ride today to win the Australian Grand Prix in a thrilling spectacle filled with drama. Teammate Valentino Rossi delivered another exciting performance, fighting to take third on the podium.
Following concerns over the safety of the Bridgestone tyres to last full race distance the race was changed to incorporate a bike change at the ten-lap mark, with the total laps reduced to 19.
The start saw Lorenzo take the hole-shot from his pole position with riders Marc Marquez and Dani Pedrosa in hot pursuit. The reigning champion gave no quarter but was unable to pull away, the rivals staying within 0.5 of a second as they counted down to the pit stop. This itself turned into a bizarre event with potential consequences for the championship. Pedrosa pitted a lap early, Lorenzo pitted at the ten-lap mark and Marquez pitted a lap too late. As a result Marquez was given a black flag and disqualified and Pedrosa was forced to drop a position after crossing the white line on his pit lane exit.
Further disaster was also narrowly avoided when Marquez exited the pits just as Lorenzo passed down the straight at high speed, the two making contact into turn one. Luckily both were able to stay upright and continue. Lorenzo kept the pressure on and held the top spot for the remaining nine laps to claim the race win.
Rossi enjoyed yet another intense race long battle with rivals Cal Crutchlow and Alvaro Bautista. The three swapping positions in the fight for the last podium spot throughout the first ten laps and again in the following nine. Rossi completed a super fast pit stop, beating both out to gain two positions. As one of the most successful MotoGP riders of the modern era in Phillip Island it was never going to be easy for them to beat him, and they couldn’t. The Italian claimed third at the line to make it another double Yamaha podium.
The result leaves Lorenzo now on 280 points, 18 behind Marquez as they head to Motegi for the final of the triple-headers. Rossi stays secure in fourth position on 214 points, 35 ahead of Crutchlow in fifth.
1st / 29'07.155 / 19 laps
“I’m really happy with this win, we’ve also been lucky because Marc made this mistake. Without that he would have been second or first because he was really fast today. So we’ve been lucky but we were unlucky in the middle of the championship so today is a balance. When I was entering the first corner Marc was exiting the pit at exactly the same time, the situation was almost impossible to avoid. I was braking a little later to open the line and I don't think he was looking so much entering the corner so it was both our fault. Now we have options, if Marc keeps constant on the podium then it is impossible to win the championship but there are a lot of laps to go so anything could happen. It’s unbelievable to have 50Grand Prix victories at 26years old. It seems like only yesterday when I won in Brazil in 2003 but it’s been ten years. I’m very proud of it and hope to win some more in the future!”
3rd / +12.344 / 19 laps
“At the end the result was good, I’m so happy to be on the podium here at Phillip Island because it’s always a great pleasure and a great atmosphere. I tried to give the maximum, the race was very thrilling and I enjoyed it very much, especially because with the team we were able to do a very good job in the pit and gain two positions. I had a great battle with Cal, when I understood it was for the podium I tried to give the maximum. In the last half of the lap it started to rain which was very scary but at the end it was ok and a good result. We still need to work and improve to be faster for the next race.”
Yamaha Factory Racing Wilco Zeelenberg
“A perfect result, winning here is a dream for us after two tough races. With Marc making the mistake it opens the championship a little more as well. 18 points is a completely different story to nearly 40. We are very pleased with that.”
Yamaha Factory Racing Massimo Meregalli
“It has been an incredible race, Jorge didn't make any mistakes and led from the first to the last lap, always pushing hard. It was also nice to have the flag to flag in dry conditions and we got a lot of points to close the gap. There is only 18 points between them now so the championship is more open. We are looking to Motegi now to keep going and close it more. Vale did another great race, another double podium which is a great result for Yamaha. We had some doubts before the start of the race on grip but we got a great result.”
More, from a press release issued by Ducati Corse:
Hayden seventh at Phillip Island, Dovizioso ninth
In a dramatic Australian Grand Prix that featured a “flag-to-flag” format in the dry, with obligatory pit stops, Nicky Hayden and Andrea Dovizioso maintained their cool in challenging circumstances, riding to seventh and ninth place finishes, respectively. The unusual format, which had riders switching bikes at the midway point of the shortened 19-lap race, was implemented by Race Direction in response to tyre wear being much higher than anticipated over the course of the weekend.
In the race’s first half, the two Ducati Team colleagues battled with one another and fellow Ducati rider Andrea Iannone. Hayden used good pit strategy to get away from the other two Ducati riders and make a run at sixth-place Bradley Smith that ultimately fell just short. Similarly, Dovizioso was unsuccessful in his late bid to overtake Iannone and ultimately had to accept ninth place.
With the first two legs of this overseas tripleheader now complete, the MotoGP teams now return to Asia for next weekend’s Japanese Grand Prix at Motegi.
Nicky Hayden - Ducati Team, 7th
“If I’m honest, I hoped to be more competitive, but it went better than some of our recent races. My first tyre didn’t feel as grippy as I expected. I was racing with Iannone and Dovi, but I knew I was faster than those guys and didn’t want to tow them. I waited to do the opposite of them, so when I saw them go in the pits, I put my head down and did a good in-lap, then did a good lap leaving the pits and was able to put a couple of seconds onto them. I got to the back of Smith at the end, but I was struggling in the last corner, and there were some spots of rain. As for the pit stop, it was easy. I’ve been with my team for five years, and we practice it sometimes. Yes, this pit is tight, but we’re used to doing 340 Km/h, so if you use your head, I don’t think coming in at 60 is so dangerous.”
Andrea Dovizioso - Ducati Team, 9th
“The race was more enjoyable than usual because of the changes they made, as well as the strategies. I had a pretty tough battle with Nicky and Iannone but it was all a bit difficult for me, also because my two GP13s didn’t have the same feeling. The second bike wasn’t as good as the first. Anyway, I don’t have any excuses; I’m just not happy with the result. I had another battle with Iannone and came close to him at the very end, but I didn’t manage to beat him. Nicky did a good job and had a really fast in-lap; he caught Smith and managed to have a good pace from the start of the race.”
Paolo Ciabatti – Ducati MotoGP Project Director
“Today’s race was really strange, exciting with many twists. The ‘flag-to-flag’ format in the dry with a maximum of 10 laps per tyre and an obligatory pit stop put more pressure on our team. Still, I must say everything went smoothly, and I’d like to complement our boys, who didn’t make any mistakes. The final result of the race definitely isn’t very satisfying for us, but Nicky and Dovi tried their hardest, as always.”
More, from a press release issued by Dorna:
Jorge Lorenzo has inflicted maximum damage on the day Marc Marquez could have clinched the MotoGP™ crown, as the current title-holder clinched his 50th career race victory in a Tissot Australian Grand Prix including mandatory bike changes. Failing to acknowledge the pre-determined pit window, Marquez was shown the black flag.
Prior to the race, it was announced that the duration would decrease from 27 to 19 laps on the grounds of safety, with tyre degradation throughout practice having been significantly higher than expected on the newly resurfaced Phillip Island circuit. Furthermore, all riders would be obliged to pit for bike changes on either the ninth or tenth lap of the race, while also running the harder available compound throughout.
A clean start saw no fallers, with Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) attacking Lorenzo at the Honda hairpin, but the Yamaha Factory Racing man immediately retaking the top spot on the run into Siberia. The sensation would come with the mandatory pit window, with Marquez’s teammate Pedrosa first to peel off from third place at the end of Lap 9 and followed by numerous other riders.
Lorenzo would pit at the end of the tenth tour but, having expected a pit lane duel with Marquez, saw the 20-year-old rookie continue for another circulation of the circuit. Marquez then came in at the end of Lap 11, outside the pre-determined window of pitting by Lap 10 at the latest. In a remarkable twist for the 2013 World Championship battle, Marquez was disqualified, as was Australian Bryan Staring (GO&FUN Honda Gresini) as the same error had been committed.
Having escaped a touch with Marquez as the latter re-joined from the pits, Lorenzo went on to claim win number six of the season; this also marked the first time since 2006 that a rider other than the now retired Casey Stoner had clinched victory at Phillip Island. Pedrosa finished second to maintain his own title aspirations, as Yamaha Factory Racing’s Valentino Rossi beat Monster Yamaha Tech3’s Cal Crutchlow and GO&FUN Honda Gresini’s Alvaro Bautista in a thrilling contest for third, while light rain began to fall as proceedings drew to a close.
Bradley Smith was sixth for Tech3, having run as high as fourth thanks to a rapid start, while the top ten was rounded out by Nicky Hayden (Ducati Team), Andrea Iannone (Energy T.I. Pramac Racing), Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team) and Randy de Puniet (Power Electronics Aspar) who ended a race as lead CRT for the first time this year. Danilo Petrucci finished 15th for Came IodaRacing Project, denying a first point for Luca Scassa as the Cardion AB Motoracing rider finished less than one tenth of a second behind. On the same day, Aspar’s Aleix Espargaro collected honours of top CRT for the season.
After the race, the Repsol Honda Team put Marquez’s disqualification down to a misunderstanding in the team, saying that it thought he was able to run ten whole laps before pitting in, which is why he entered in the 11th.
The MotoGP™ fight now rages on to Motegi Twin Ring and the Grand Prix of Japan, with the championship lead having been decreased from 43 to 18 points. The season will then end at the Ricardo Tormo circuit in Valencia, Spain on 10th November.
Pol Espargaro has retaken the Moto2™ World Championship lead, winning Sunday’s Tissot Australian Grand Prix in the absence of Scott Redding. Tom Luthi and Jordi Torres completed the podium, with Tito Rabat sinking to eighth place.
When looking back at the Phillip Island round of the 2013 season, the race is likely to be remembered as a key turning point in the campaign. Redding’s chances took a major blow on Saturday, with the Englishman and long-time championship leader being ruled out of action as he fractured his left wrist. Following an operation on Saturday night, the Marc VDS Racing Team rider was left helpless on the sidelines.
Espargaro (Tuenti HP 40) started from his fifth pole of the season, joined on the front row by teammate and last weekend’s Sepang winner Tito Rabat who has demonstrated rapidity since practice began on Friday. A reduced race distance saw the riders tackling only 13 laps of the southern Australian venue, with fears over tyres having seen changes to the duration following the qualifying session on Saturday.
It would prove to be a lights to flag victory for Espargaro, his fifth of the season, allowing the Catalan to win at Phillip Island for the second consecutive year; in the process, he snatches back the championship lead for the first time since after the season-opening race in Qatar. In a brilliant day for Espargaro’s championship situation, teammate Rabat finished only eighth after running off the circuit.
Tom Luthi (Interwetten Paddock Moto2 Racing) pushed Espargaro all the way, finishing only half a second behind Espargaro for a fifth rostrum of the season and his second within the space of a week. Jordi Torres was third for Aspar Team Moto2, collecting his first rostrum result since winning the German Grand Prix in July.
The top five was completed by NGM Mobile Racing’s Simone Corsi and former Phillip Island winner Alex de Angelis, who ran second for NGM Mobile Forward Racing in the early stages of the race. Redding’s teammate Mika Kallio was seventh from the aforementioned Rabat, Aspar’s Nico Terol and QMMF Racing’s Anthony West who successfully finished in the top ten in his home event. Reigning Moto3™ World Champion Sandro Cortese finished 11th for Dynavolt Intact GP from Forward’s Ricky Cardus and Tech3’s Danny Kent.
Five riders failed to finish: Julian Simon (Italtrans Racing Team), Johann Zarco (Came IodaRacing Project), Xavier Simeon (Maptaq SAG Zelos Team), Louis Rossi (Tech3) and Alex Mariñelarena (Blusens Avintia), while Tuenti HP 40’s Alex Pons finished 24th after an early-race off. Pons, Italtrans’ Takaaki Nakagami and Maptaq SAG Zelos Team’s Marcel Schrotter were all handed penalties for jumping the start.
With just the Japanese and Valencian rounds of the season remaining, Espargaro leads Redding in the championship by 16 points following a dramatic shaking up of the establishment. Rabat sits third, 36 points behind the leader with a maximum of 50 left on offer. The action will continue at Twin Ring Motegi next weekend.
Alex Rins has won a thrilling Moto3™ Tissot Australian Grand Prix, coming out on top of a multiple-rider battle to beat Maverick Viñales by just three thousandths of a second. Both riders decreased the championship-leading advantage of pole-sitter Luis Salom, who completed the podium at Phillip Island.
Rins’ latest victory of 2013 was surely his most dramatic to date, ensuring he has now matched Salom on six race wins this season, as well as having won three of the last four Grand Prix. Remarkably, the top seven riders were covered by just over one second, with Niccolo Antonelli only a further 1.1 in arrears.
The majority of riders in the field found themselves in tight groups for the duration of the 23-lap race, affected by light rain on certain parts of the newly resurfaced circuit. Philipp Oettl (Interwetten Paddock Moto3) would fail to start due to engine problems and there were retirements for Francesco Bagnaia (San Carlo Team Italia) and Hyuga Watanabe (La Fonte Tascaracing), but no less than 30 riders managed the testing conditions to finish.
A titanic battle at the forefront saw a selection of riders enjoying time in the lead, whereas Salom ran as low as seventh but looked to be making his customary climb to the very sharp end in the closing minutes of the race. However it was Mapfre Aspar Team Moto3’s Jonas Folger who stole the limelight as the final lap began, shooting into the lead at Doohan curve, only to run wide and drop to sixth three corners later.
The run to line resulted in the closest finish so far this year in the World Championship, with Rins (Estrella Galicia 0,0) pipping Viñales (Team Calvo) after having both started on the second row of the grid. The winner now moves to within just five points of championship leader Salom (Red Bull KTM Ajo) with a pair of races remaining in Japan and Valencia, whereas Viñales is also in contention and 22 in arrears of the overall leader.
Rins’ teammate Alex Marquez finished fourth, with the first group completed by local favourite Jack Miller (Caretta Technology – RTG), Folger, front-row starter Efren Vazquez (Mahindra Racing) and Antonelli (GO&FUN Gresini Moto3). Avant Tecno’s Niklas Ajo was a further 12.8 seconds behind and headed the second group, with Alexis Masbou rounding out the top ten for Ongetta-Rivacold. Mahindra’s Miguel Oliveira recovered to 26th spot and was fortunate to avoid injury after flying over his handlebars at the MG hairpin on the opening lap.