MotoGP Report

This is the 25th occasion that a GP has been held at the Mugello circuit, including twenty times consecutively since 1991. Mugello has seen many great races over the years and below are some of the facts and figures from these previous Grand Prix events:

> The first time a Grand Prix event was held at Mugello was in 1976 when the 500cc race was won by Barry Sheene, riding a Suzuki, by a margin of just 0.1 sec from Phil Read in one of the closest finishes of all time.

> Only two venues on this year’s calendar have a longer ongoing sequence of hosting Grand Prix events: Jerez and Assen.

> A total of 78 Grand Prix races for solo motorcycles have been held at the Mugello circuit as follows: MotoGP – 8, 500cc – 16, 350cc – 2, 250cc – 24, 125cc – 23, 50cc/80cc – 5.

> Yamaha have been the most successful manufacturer in the four-stroke MotoGP era with five successive victories from 2004 through to 2008.

> Honda has had just two victories in the MotoGP class at Mugello, the last of which was in 2003.

> Casey Stoner’s win at Mugello last year was the first win for Ducati at Mugello and the first victory for any rider at Mugello other than Valentino Rossi on a four-stroke MotoGP machine.

> The best result for Suzuki in the MotoGP era is 5th, which was achieved by John Hopkins in 2007 and Loris Capirossi last year.

> Valentino Rossi is the most successful rider across all the classes at Mugello, with a total of nine victories; one each in 125cc and 250cc classes to add to his seven successive MotoGP wins.

> Loris Capirossi was the first Italian rider to take a premier-class victory at Mugello when he won the 500cc race in 2000 after a race long battle with his countrymen Biaggi and Rossi both of whom fell in the closing stages.

> The highest recorded maximum speed at Mugello is 349 kph (217 mph) set by Dani Pedrosa in the first free practice session last year.

> The MotoGP race at Mugello in 2004 is the shortest ever premier-class Grand Prix race. The race lasted just six laps, after the first attempt to run the race was stopped due to rain and then restarted for the remaining laps under the rain rules as they stood at that time.

> At least one Italian rider has stood on the podium in the premier-class race at Mugello for the last fourteen years. The last premier-class podium at Mugello without at least one Italian rider was 1995.

Mugello MotoGP Rider Stats and Facts

> Jorge Lorenzo has had mixed fortune in his two appearances at the circuit riding in the MotoGP class. In 2008 he crashed on lap seven while battling with Dovizioso for 5th place. Last year he qualified on pole, but crashed on the sighting lap. He used his spare bike to start the race and ended the first lap down in sixth, but charged back through the field to eventually finish second.

> Valentino Rossi has an incredible record at Mugello, winning for seven successive years from 2002 to 2008, followed by a third place finish last year. Rossi’s seven-year winning streak at his home Grand Prix is unmatched in the history of Grand Prix racing.

> Casey Stoner’s results have improved each time he has raced at Mugello in the MotoGP class. He crashed in 2006 on lap nine after making his way up to 3rd from 9th on the grid, in 2007 he was 4th after qualifying on pole for the first time on the Ducati and in 2008 he set a new lap record on his way to finishing 2nd. Last year he had his first win in any class at the Mugello circuit and gave Ducati their first victory at their home Grand Prix.

> Dani Pedrosa has had consistently good results in the MotoGP class at Mugello up to last year: in 2006 he was 4th, just 2 seconds behind winner Rossi; in 2007 he finished 2nd after leading for a couple of laps and setting the fastest lap of the race having qualified in 8th place on the grid. In 2009 he was the first Michelin rider, in 3rd place. Last year he qualified in 8th place on the grid and fell on lap thirteen while running with the midfield pack. His one win at Mugello came in the 250cc class in 2005.

> Andrea Dovizioso’s third place finish in the 250cc race in 2006 is his only podium at Mugello. He finished 8th in 2008 on his first appearance at Mugello on a MotoGP machine, after qualifying down in 13th place on the grid. Last year he finished 4th after having led both the wet and dry parts of the race at some stage.

> Nicky Hayden’s single podium finish at Mugello was third place in the tremendous race in 2006 on his way to winning the world title. Since then his results at Mugello have not been so good: in 2007 he finished 10th, in 2008 he qualified 6th but finished down in 13th after suffering technical problems and last year he was 12th after qualifying down in 16th place on the grid while still trying to come to terms with the Ducati.

> Randy de Puniet’s eighth place finish last year is his best result on a MotoGP machine at Mugello. In 2006 he finished 13th, he crashed on lap two in 2007 and in 2008 he crashed on lap six after a clash with Melandri.

> Mugello is one of five current circuits where Marco Melandri has not had a podium finish riding a MotoGP machine; the others are Estoril, Brno, Indianapolis and Misano. His best result on a MotoGP machine at Mugello was 4th in 2005. He won the 250cc race at the circuit in 2002 on his way to taking the world title. Melandri’s sixth place finish at Le Mans is his best dry weather result since he was 5th in Spain last year.

> Colin Edwards’ 5th place finish in 2008 is his best result from seven MotoGP starts at Mugello.

> Since becoming the first Italian rider to win in the premier-class at Mugello in 2000, Loris Capirossi has finished on the podium on four more occasions at this circuit; the last time was 2nd in 2006. Last year at Mugello, Capirossi qualified on the front row for the only time in 2009 and finished 5th which equalled his best result of the year.

> Marco Simoncelli’s victory at Mugello in2008 was his first ever GP win in the 250cc class. Last year in the 250cc GP at Mugello, Simoncelli finished 2nd, after battling all race long with Bautista and the eventual winner Pasini.

> Hector Barbera’s eighth place finish at Le Mans is his best result since moving up to the MotoGP class. He has had two podium finishes at Mugello when competing in the smaller classes; 3rd in the 125cc race in 2004 and 3rd in the 250cc class in 2007.In 2008 he qualified on pole at Mugello but suffered a nasty fall in the race when he collided with Simoncelli along the main straight.

> Mugello is one of just three current circuits where Hiroshi Aoyama has not had a podium finish during his years of racing in the 250cc class. The other two circuits are Le Mans and Valencia.

> Mika Kallio’s 4th place finish in the250cc GP in 2008 was his best result at Mugello in his seven years competing in the smaller classes. He did qualify on pole in the125cc race at Mugello in 2005 but crashed at the final corner while leading the race. Last year, on his first visit to the circuit racing a MotoGP machine he qualified in 17th on the grid, but moved up to 6th in the wet part of the race only to struggle after changing to bikes and drop down to finish 13th.

> Ben Spies will be racing at the Mugello circuit for the first time; the third successive circuit where he has had no previous racing experience.

> Aleix Espargaro did not compete in the Grand Prix at Le Mans last year as he was without a GP ride. His 9th place finish at LeMans is his best result since moving up to the MotoGP class.

> Alvaro Bautista’s victory in 2007 at Mugello was the first time he had stood on the top step of the podium in the 250ccclass. In 2008 he crashed while leading on lap seven and last year he ran off the track whilst battling for the lead and eventually finished 3rd.