On a slick Silverstone Circuit, Casey Stoner took his 34th World Championship victory, including his fourth in the 2011 MotoGP Championship.
Due to his win at Round 6 of 18, Stoner now has the MotoGP Championship lead, 18 ahead of Yamaha Factory Racing’s Jorge Lorenzo, who crashed out of Sunday’s Silverstone race.
Joining Stoner on the podium was teammate Andrea Dovizioso and Monster Tech 3 Yamaha’s Colin Edwards, who rode to third with collarbone fracture only nine-days old.
Here’s what the riders were saying following Sunday’s Silverstone MotoGP:
Nicky Hayden (Ducati Team GP11 MotoGP) says: "To be honest, I really liked my chances for a podium in the rain today; if you’d have told me before the race that I could have fourth, I’d have said, ‘No thanks, I can do better,’ but I’m not disappointed with my ride. I didn’t get a great start because the clutch was jumpy, and for the first few laps, it was hard to see and to get heat in the tires.
"I had a big moment on the exit of Turn 1 and actually jarred my shoulder pretty good, but I tried to hang in there. I saw Colin in front of me for the podium, and I really pushed. I think that’s the first time I’ve ever had the fastest lap on a Ducati, which is kind of cool even if you don’t get points for it.
"Full respect to Colin a week after breaking his collarbone, but I still don’t like him beating me for the podium! Thanks to the team. It hasn’t been an easy weekend for us, but we kept trying and got a pretty good chunk of points. We’ll take it and move on."
Valentino Rossi (Ducati Team GP11 MotoGP) says: "Without a doubt, this weekend was the most difficult so far this season, but we at least managed to do a good job of limiting the damage. Considering how we came into the race, sixth place is a fairly positive result that helps us to stay not too far from the top of the standings in fourth, which isn’t bad.
"We knew that my lack of experience here compared to the others would hurt us, but it’s also true that we haven’t managed to improve our setup as well as we should have. In fact, today Nicky managed to have a nice race and ride well, even setting the fastest lap, which demonstrates that the Ducati is competitive in the wet. We didn’t improve enough though, and that made it hard for me, as the bike was difficult to ride and I couldn’t push hard. We’re all responsible-me, the bike, and the team-so together we’ll try to improve and return to the level we were at in Le Mans and Catalunya as soon as possible, and then take another step forward."
Casey Stoner (Repsol Honda RC212V MotoGP) says: "At the beginning of the race we didn’t have a great start and I needed to wait for the tyres to get up to temperature. In the first few laps when I was behind the other riders I got a lot of spray up inside the visor and it was hard for me to see, or for me to push.
"At this time I was being careful, trying to cover my lines to stop them coming inside, then after five laps my visibility got clearer and the water drained away from my visor and I was able to start doing the lap times we were looking for and started to open up a gap.
"I was just happy to stay up on the bike, it was incredibly cold and I was so nervous as in these conditions it’s so easy to crash! We had a great race today in very tough conditions where anything could have happened, but to come away with a win is fantastic."
Andrea Dovizioso (Repsol Honda RC212V MotoGP) says: "I’m really happy with today’s podium. It’s a second place that feels like gold. The track conditions were very tricky, with much more water than in the warm up this morning. We made a modification on the set up to have more rear grip and then we did a very good strategy.
"It helped us doing two laps before the race to bring the tyres up to temperature quicker. I had a very good start and then I was focused to manage the second position with Casey. I was braking very hard to close the doors to Lorenzo and Simoncelli."
"I had a good rhythm, not to far from Casey’s pace, but he is very strong with these conditions so I preferred to manage my race the best I could. I want to thank my team for the hard work and the support. We need to improve the performance also in qualifying but at the important moment, in the race, we are there. We never give up. With today’s second place we have consolidated the third position in the Championship and reduced the gap to Lorenzo. The season is still long so I’m confident."
Colin Edwards (Monster Yamaha Tech 3 M1 MotoGP) says: "That was an unbelievable race and to finish on the podium feels amazing. I was happy to qualify eighth but never in a million years did I think I’d be on the podium just over a week after breaking my collarbone.
"I need to thank Dr Xavier Mir for the repair job he did on my shoulder and also my guys at Monster Yamaha Tech 3 because they gave me a phenomenal bike today. My shoulder felt great and it was the muscle damage around my ribs that caused me the most pain. But the rain definitely helped because it was a lot less physical than in the dry. I just gritted my teeth and got on with it, just trying to stay smooth and not make any mistakes.
"Conditions were pretty bad and it was a case of working out when and where you could push. I’d have been happy to fin ish the race and then go home to think about Assen. But I saw a few people succumbing to the conditions and I saw P3 on by board and I couldn’t believe it. At that time though there were still eight or nine laps to go and I couldn’t feel my hands or my feet because it was so wet and cold. It was difficult but it was a good way to the end the weekend for the Team after what happened to Cal. Nobody wants to get hurt, but being injured for your home race is really tough to take, so I wish him a quick recovery and hope to see him back in Assen."
Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha Factory Racing M1 MotoGP) says: "I feel disappointed because the crash was my own mistake. It’s a shame for the team because they did a very good job all weekend and also my Fan Club who come here to support me. I was riding with confidence, but I had to wait my moment to overtake Andrea.
"I think I could have fought for the victory with Casey. I wasn’t worried that Simoncelli was catching me; I was worried because Casey was going if I didn’t overtake Andrea… then I crashed! Before Casey was chasing me, like a greyhound with a hare but now the situation has reversed. Now we have to go for the victory in Assen! I want to say congratulations to Colin; it has been a good weekend for him. He deserves it after last week."
Ben Spies (Yamaha Factory Racing M1 MotoGP) says: "I’m so disappointed to finish like this after we worked so hard to be ready for the race. It’s been a challenging weekend for all the guys with the different weather changes but we were ready to race with a really good package.
"The track was really wet, when I hit the brakes going into turn one the front just dropped away and I hit the wall before I knew it. I hit my back pretty badly, my back protector is really busted up, but it did its job. I’m really sore and will probably need a big cushion for a few days but I’m happy it wasn’t worse. We’ll take a few days to relax and recover then come back fighting at Assen."
Alvaro Bautista (Rizla Suzuki GSV-R MotoGP) says: "For sure I am very happy today, because we have been able to finish the weekend with a great result. I have to say thank-you to my team, they have so much passion for what they do and have helped me get back to my maximum level. With all their help, this has been the first race that I have been able to feel competitive since the injury and I was nearer my limit than I have been all season – so a really big thanks to all of them!
"In the wet warm-up I felt very strong and had good feedback from the whole package, so I was feeling confident for this afternoon. In the race it was important make a good start, I did that and I think I was maybe fifth or sixth, but it was difficult to see because I was splashed a lot by other riders and I couldn’t see too much and had to drop back a bit.
"I tried to get into a good rhythm and as the race wore on I started to ride more comfortably. I saw that a couple of riders crashed due to all the water that was making it very difficult, but I just carried on and did my own thing. I had to have lots of feeling with the brakes and the gas because it was really very difficult conditions and towards the end I saw that Valentino was trying to catch me. I pushed a bit more and started to close on Nicky, but he responded and kept the gap, but by then I had increased on Valentino and I then just wanted to finish. Fifth is a good result and now I’m looking forward to getting to the next race and have the same level of confidence and feeling – if not even better!"
Loris Capirossi (Pramac Racing Ducati GP11) says: "Compared to yesterday, the situation didn’t improve. It was important for us to finish the race, but I had a really hard time because I lacked feeling with the front end.
"I wasn’t able to make the front tire work, and I was close to falling every time I leaned over, even putting my feet down. I was only thinking about finishing the race. The weather also made things really difficult for us. It was very cold, and it was hard for me to ride the bike. For now, anyway, we’re even having trouble in dry conditions. It’s a shame, because I surely could have done better."
Randy De Puniet (Pramac Racing Ducati GP11) says: "Today was the worst race in my life. It’s difficult for me to explain this bad day, which began with a bad crash during warm up. I lacked feeling with the bike because of the usual problem with the front. Then it was difficult to stay up in these conditions. I came close to crashing at least two times a lap. I don’t say anything. It was a horrible race."
Marco Simoncelli (San Carlo Honda Gresini RC212V MotoGP) says: "I am completely distraught because it seems every week we line up ready for a top race and something happens to deny me. I had already had a moment in that corner so I tried to be more careful but the front closed and I found myself on the floor waving goodbye to the podium once again. I am gutted! I’ll go home with my head down now but tomorrow I have to start looking forward to Assen with the hope that this bad run is over."
Hiroshi Aoyama (San Carlo Honda Gresini RC212V MotoGP) says: "It was difficult to get a feeling for the bike in the wet conditions this morning in the warm-up but as the laps went by in the race I felt more and more comfortable. The end result isn’t particularly satisfying but we got good experience on the wet track that will help us find a good set-up in the future. Hopefully we can do better next time out."
Toni Elias (LCR Honda RC212V MotoGP) says: "I am quite happy as yesterday I was hoping for a wet race to finish in the top ten. I could not have finished in the same position in the dry as we are still struggling with bike set up. Anyway this is a positive weekend for me and the team because we have scored further points in the standing.
"I knew I could fight for a better position battling with Rossi and Abraham but after some laps I had problems with my helmet: the visibility was not clear and a couple of times I had to open the visor. I think I took a brave start from the 14th spot on the grid but I went wide in the first corner: luckily I was capable to rejoin the track proceeding with my race."