Second for Honda's Dovizioso
By: Tasha Crook | Published 10 April 2006, 12:00 | Views: 595 | tags: motogp, 250gp, honda racing, andrea dovizioso, humangest honda, sebastian porto, repsol honda, yuki takahashi, martin cardenas, wurth honda bqr, shuhei aoyama, arnaud vincent, molenaar honda, arturo tizon, jordi carchano, stop and go racing
Jorge Lorenzo (Aprilia) won a thrilling 250cc race from Andrea Dovizioso (Humangest Racing Honda RS250RW) after the pair pulled well clear of the field by mid-race distance. Roberto Locatelli (Aprilia) was a fine third after running off track in the early laps and fighting back into contention.Locatelli made the run into turn one from the lights to head the field, but Dovizioso led across the line to begin lap two and set an early fastest lap of this 20-lap race. By lap three Dovi held a 1.36 second advantage over his Spanish rival Lorenzo.
By lap 12 Lorenzo and Dovi were 13 seconds ahead of Barbera, but the recovering Locatelli was setting a fastest lap on his charge back into contention after his ‘off’. The race order up front was to remain fixed as Dovi shadowed Lorenzo waiting for the final lap.
Lorenzo knew a Dovi challenge would come, he just didn’t know where. With half a lap to go Dovi made his move up the inside but Lorenzo stayed with him to hold a tighter line into the right/right combination before the final two turns. Dovi hung close but could not make an impression across the line.
Sebastian Porto (Repsol Honda RS250RW) finished seventh and Yuki Takahashi (Humangest Racing Honda RS250RW) was ninth. But the huge gap between themselves and the leading duo will be of some concern.
“I have to be happy with this,” said Dovizioso. “After the warm up, I was convinced we’d be able to do a good race and I did a very good start. The team worked very hard and we were fast today. But I need more power. There is a long way to go this season and I know Honda will be working hard so that we can have an edge in the races to come.”
Porto said, “Well it hasn’t been that bad. I’m happy with the race, obviously not with the result. You’re here to win, but given all the problems we’ve had and our current situation, finishing today has been very important to me, on a personal level. But there’s still a lot to be improved. We have to improve the chassis, and the engine didn’t work that well today either. I’ve given my best with what I had.”
Takahashi said, “It’s been a tough race for me as I’ve had problems with the front throughout the whole weekend. In the warm up we tested other solutions but without getting benefits. Before the race, my team decided to fit new suspension that I’ve never tried and actually it solved the problem. Now we have to adjust the general set up, but Istanbul is similar to this track and so we will start from a good base.”
The overall points standings at this early stage of the season show Lorenzo in the lead with 50 points after two consecutive wins, Dovi in second with 36 points and Locatelli on 25.
Andrea Dovizioso, Humangest Honda: 2nd
“We struggle a bit in approaching the race and we are too much at the limit with the set-up of the bike. This doesn’t allow me to do the difference. But this morning, after the warm up, I was convinced to be able to do a good race and I did a very good start. However, Lorenzo has followed me and in the middle stages he was able to pass me. Taking some risk, I kept the contact with his Aprilia and when we begun the last lap my strategy was to suddenly pass him and try to take a bit of advantage in the first half of the track, where I was going more strongly, while he was being faster in the final curves. It didn’t happen, though, I went wide in a curve and he has passed me again. I could also have tried in last curve, but a sideslip has forced me to shut off the throttle. Actually, I hoped in the victory but we still need more horsepower to really fight for win.
Sebastian Porto, Repsol Honda: 7th
"Well, that it hasn't been that bad. I’m happy, especially with the race, obviously not with the result. You're here to win, but given all the problems we've had and our current situation, finishing today has been very important to me, on a personal level. But there's still a lot to be improved. We have to further improve the chassis, and the engine didn't work well today either. I've given my best with what I had. The best was the last part of the race. I was fourth in the group and I managed to overtake them all; finishing seventh isn't bad. Let's hope that this will be the beginning of an improvement and that the next race will be even better. We haven't managed to have a good feeling on the bike with the new tyres yet. We loose a lot on new tyres, but then, halfway the race, it is the other way around. When the others start going down, this bike keeps the pace. That's something I still have to improve, the initial part on new tyres, I need better grip. Now it's time to enjoy and relax; I'm already looking forward to preparing the next race."
Yuki Takahashi, Humangest Honda: 9th
“It has been a tough race for me as I had problems in the front throughout the whole weekend. In the warm up we tested other solutions but without getting benefits. Before the race, my team decided to put a new suspension that I’ve never tried and actually it solved the problem. Now we have to adjust the general set up, but Istanbul is similar to this track and so we will start from a good base”
Martin Cardenas, Wurth Honda BQR: 11th
"I made a good start and caught the fast group ahead of me. I couldn't hold onto them and when they went away I concentrated on holding my position. The bike is really good and I am really happy with the season so far. I'm looking forward to Turkey I like the track down there."
Shuhei Aoyama, Repsol Honda: 13th
"I'm obviously not happy at all, it's a bad result. The bike worked quite well; we could have improved a bit the suspensions, but the overall setting was OK. But the rider hasn't been at a good level today. I don't know why, but I haven't been able to be fast on this circuit at any time. I probably haven't been focussed enough this weekend. I made a good start but several riders overtook me in the first corner. After the crash in Jerez I wanted above all to finish the race here, but I wanted to do it much more in the front."
Arnaud Vincent, Molenaar Honda: 16th
"From the last qualifying session we had an engine problem. It's difficult to know what it was because when we checked carburetion it looks really good. I was down on acceleration an top speed was not as good as it was on Friday morning. Pity because we made progress with the chassis. I like the track at Istanbul so if we find the engine problem I will have a better race for sure."
Arturo Tizon, Wurth Honda BQR: dnf – crash
"I got a good start and the bike was running really well. We made a compromise on suspension and I ran stiffer suspension settings on the rear and I had a much better feeling with the bike. But I was pushing too hard and lost the font end and crashed. The positive point about this race was that I know I can race with the riders in 250 and I'm looking forward to Turkey, it's a track I learned last year."
Jordi Carchano, Stop and Go Racing: dnf - crash.
"I lost the front end and crashed, on lap 16. It was a pity because the team had given me a good bike to race. The shifter problems we had all though qualifying were fixed and I was able to race as I wanted."
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