Dani Pedrosa wins dramatic MotoGP season finale

Monday 12th November, 2012


Author: SpeedCafe ©

Dani Pedrosa

Dani Pedrosa

Dani Pedrosa has won a dramatic final MotoGP of the season, holding on for victory at Valencia.

In what was a race mixed by a rain shower prior to the start, the Repsol Honda driver led home first time podium finisher Katsuyuki Nakasuga and retiring MotoGP great Casey Stoner.

The race was declared wet before the start, despite a dry line having formed. Only Yamaha’s world champion Jorge Lorenzo, his team-mate Nakasuga, and LCR Honda MotoGP’s Stefan Bradl chose the softer option slick tyres. All others started on the hard wets. However, in a twist unseen this season, Pedrosa, Ducati’s Nicky Hayden, Tech 3’s Cal Crutchlow and San Carlo Honda Gresini’s Álvaro Bautista decided to start from pit-lane after their sighting lap, with all of them switching to a bike with slick tyres.

At the start, Power Electronics Aspar’s Aleix Espargaró led the early exchanges, becoming the first CRT bike to lead a Grand Prix. Within three laps, however, Lorenzo was in front and looked to have nailed the strategy.

But the track quickly dried and many riders that started on wets came into the pits to switch bikes (to slicks), the first of which being Repsol Honda’s Casey Stoner, Pramac Racing Team’s Héctor Barberá and Tech 3’s Andrea Dovizioso.

The race looked like it would settle down from that point, but it only got more interesting, with riders falling off their bikes left, right and centre.

Hayden, Iván Silva, Roberto Rolfo crashed out of contention, while Bradl saw a potential podium slid into the gravel trap early.

The biggest news of the race, though, was a huge crash for Lorenzo, who highsided off his Yamaha as he was passing back markers. He was lucky to walk away from the crash.

This left Pedrosa in the lead, who also had his work cut out getting past the slower riders. Once through, it was a (slippery) Sunday ride to victory for the pole-sitter.

Second place would have gone to pit-lane starter Crutchlow but was caught out by the conditions and fell off his Yamaha.

Wildcard Nakasuga inherited second place, securing the first podium finish of 2012 for a Japanese rider.

Bautista was third after Crutchlow’s exit, although Stoner caught and passed him on the penultimate lap.

Race result, Valencia

12526Dani PEDROSASPARepsol Honda TeamHonda149.048’23.819
22021Katsuyuki NAKASUGAJPNYamaha Factory RacingYamaha147.0+37.661
3161Casey STONERAUSRepsol Honda TeamHonda145.9+1’00.633
41319Alvaro BAUTISTASPASan Carlo Honda GresiniHonda145.8+1’02.811
51151Michele PIRROITASan Carlo Honda GresiniFTR144.6+1’26.608
6104Andrea DOVIZIOSOITAMonster Yamaha Tech 3Yamaha144.5+1’30.423
7917Karel ABRAHAMCZECardion AB MotoracingDucati144.4+1’31.789
889Danilo PETRUCCIITACame IodaRacing ProjectIoda-Suter143.51 Lap
9777James ELLISONGBRPaul Bird MotorsportART143.11 Lap
10646Valentino ROSSIITADucati TeamDucati142.91 Lap
11541Aleix ESPARGAROSPAPower Electronics AsparART141.11 Lap
12414Randy DE PUNIETFRAPower Electronics AsparART138.32 Laps
13373Hiroshi AOYAMAJPNAvintia BlusensBQR136.72 Laps
1425Colin EDWARDSUSANGM Mobile Forward RacingSuter132.63 Laps
Not Classified
35Cal CRUTCHLOWGBRMonster Yamaha Tech 3Yamaha146.78 Laps
71Claudio CORTIITAAvintia BlusensInmotec130.013 Laps
8Hector BARBERASPAPramac Racing TeamDucati134.514 Laps
99Jorge LORENZOSPAYamaha Factory RacingYamaha146.617 Laps
6Stefan BRADLGERLCR Honda MotoGPHonda141.821 Laps
84Roberto ROLFOITASpeed MasterART128.324 Laps
22Ivan SILVASPAAvintia BlusensBQR126.928 Laps
69Nicky HAYDENUSADucati TeamDucati126.928 Laps

Final championship table

1Jorge LORENZO350
2Dani PEDROSA332
3Casey STONER254
4Andrea DOVIZIOSO218
5Alvaro BAUTISTA178
6Valentino ROSSI163
8Stefan BRADL135
9Nicky HAYDEN122
10Ben SPIES88
11Hector BARBERA83
13Randy DE PUNIET62
14Karel ABRAHAM59
15Michele PIRRO43
16James ELLISON35
18Katsuyuki NAKASUGA27
19Danilo PETRUCCI27
20Colin EDWARDS27
21Jonathan REA17
22Mattia PASINI13
23Ivan SILVA12
24Toni ELIAS10
25Hiroshi AOYAMA3
26Steve RAPP2
27David SALOM1


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