2011 MotoGPFor the second consecutive year, the MotoGP Championship will head to the Motorland circuit in Aragon, Spain. The 3.3-mile circuit is one of four races on the GP schedule (Jerez, Catalunya, Valencia), creating more races in Spain than any other country.
And this is good news for the reigning MotoGP Champion Jorge Lorenzo, considering Aragon will be yet another home race for the Spaniard.When the Aragon circuit debuted on the MotoGP schedule last year, Lorenzo started from second on the grid, and didn’t get his usual podium finish. The 24-year-old Lorenzo finished fourth after an intense battle with Ducati Team’s Nicky Hayden.But regardless of last year’s finish, Lorenzo returned to the top at the previous round in Misano, reducing the gap from points leader Casey Stoner (Repsol Honda) to 35 points as the series heads to Round 14 of 18 this weekend.Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha Factory Racing M1 MotoGP) says: “I am very happy to be riding at home again and for a second time in Aragon. I’m looking forward to seeing all the fans there, and especially my Fan Club who are coming. Last year I couldn’t get the podium which was a big shame.“I wanted it because I was competing in Spain and the season had been perfect and also because I was wearing Shoya’s helmet (Shoya Tomizawa) in his memory. I had a good race two weeks ago in Misano and now I am very confident we can obtain another podium, we believe we can again reduce our gap to Casey.”As for Lorenzo’s teammate Ben Spies, the Texan finished fifth last year at Aragon. Spies is currently in a battle for fourth place in the 2011 MotoGP Championship with Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa. Spies trails Pedrosa by 15 points heading into Aragon this weekend.Ben Spies (Yamaha Factory Racing M1 MotoGP) says: “It’s great to come to a track on the calendar where I have the same level of experience as the rest of the field. Last year was one of my most enjoyable races, it was great fun fighting with Dovi to keep fifth and we weren’t so far from the battle for third until I made a small mistake.“I’ve had a chance to relax at my home in Como after the Indianapolis and Misano back to back races so I’m feeling good and looking forward to seeing what we can do.”The Yamaha Factory duo of Jorge Lorenzo and Ben Spies will be on the Aragon circuit Friday for the first of three practices.In other Yamaha Factory Racing MotoGP news, the team has confirmed it will compete at Round 15 in Motegi October 2; the race was initially questionable due to radiation scares from the March Earthquake that devasted Japan.
This week we ride two genre-departing motorcycles from the established American manufacturers. Jess McKinley gives us his thoughts on the all new Harley-Davidson Pan America Special, and Ron Lieback gives his on Indian’s latest version of the FTR 1200 S.