In a clear case of how statistics can deceive, Valentino Rossi won the Czech Republic Grand Prix by 11.766 seconds over Dani Pedrosa on Aug. 16 at the Automotodrom Brno.
There was nothing easy about this win for Rossi, who heads next to the Red Bull Indianapolis GP on Aug. 28-30 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway with a 50-point lead over Fiat Yamaha teammate Jorge Lorenzo.
2008 Red Bull Indianapolis GP winner Rossi only was able to cruise to the finish of the 22-lap race because Lorenzo fell while leading with five laps to go while locked in a compelling duel with pole sitter Rossi. It was the second consecutive race in which Lorenzo has crashed out of the lead.
Valentino Rossi Speaks…
"Lorenzo has demonstrated all this year that he has fantastic speed, and for sure in two weeks in Indianapolis he will want revenge," Rossi said. "I know I will have a battle. It would be very stupid to relax now because Jorge is very strong, and for sure we expect another hard fight with him in Indianapolis."
Jorge Lorenzo Speaks…
"There’s nothing more I can say except that I’m so sorry to the team and to Yamaha, and I will do everything I can to make it up in America."
Toni Elias finished third, his first podium result of the season for San Carlo Honda Gresini just a day after he officially lost his ride for 2010 with the team.
Americans Nicky Hayden and Colin Edwards enjoyed solid results heading into their home race. 2006 World Champion Hayden finished sixth on the Ducati Team bike, just .132 of a second ahead of Edwards on the Monster Yamaha Tech 3. It was the second-best finish of the season for Hayden.
Colin Edwards Speaks…
"I’m back home again for Indianapolis next time out, and I’ll be looking for a much better weekend," Edwards said.
Six-time MotoGP World Champion Rossi and Pedrosa produced great starts, as Lorenzo slipped from second to third at the start. Rossi passed Pedrosa for the lead early in the first lap, and Lorenzo passed Pedrosa on Lap 4 and pursued Rossi.
Just past the halfway point of the race, Lorenzo found more speed and closed on Rossi, as the pair started lapping nearly two seconds quicker than any other riders. Lorenzo passed Rossi for the lead on Lap 17 while setting the fastest lap of the race.
But Lorenzo ran wide under braking on the next lap and lost the front end, sliding into the gravel and handing Rossi an easy victory. It was the 160th Grand Prix podium finish of Rossi’s illustrious career, setting a record he shared with fellow Italian legend Giacomo Agostini.