Lorenzo Scores 50th Grand Prix Victory

Lorenzo
Lorenzo

Lorenzo Scores 50th Grand Prix Victory in Phillip Island Thriller

Defending world champion Jorge Lorenzo delivered a stunning ride today to win the Australian Grand Prix in a thrilling spectacle filled with drama. Teammate Valentino Rossi delivered another exciting performance, fighting to take third on the podium.

Following concerns over the safety of the Bridgestone tyres to last full race distance the race was changed to incorporate a bike change at the ten-lap mark, with the total laps reduced to 19.

The start saw Lorenzo take the hole-shot from his pole position with riders Marc Marquez and Dani Pedrosa in hot pursuit. The reigning champion gave no quarter but was unable to pull away, the rivals staying within 0.5 of a second as they counted down to the pit stop. This itself turned into a bizarre event with potential consequences for the championship. Pedrosa pitted a lap early, Lorenzo pitted at the ten-lap mark and Marquez pitted a lap too late. As a result Marquez was given a black flag and disqualified and Pedrosa was forced to drop a position after crossing the white line on his pit lane exit.

Further disaster was also narrowly avoided when Marquez exited the pits just as Lorenzo passed down the straight at high speed, the two making contact into turn one. Luckily both were able to stay upright and continue. Lorenzo kept the pressure on and held the top spot for the remaining nine laps to claim the race win.

Rossi enjoyed yet another intense race long battle with rivals Cal Crutchlow and Alvaro Bautista. The three swapping positions in the fight for the last podium spot throughout the first ten laps and again in the following nine. Rossi completed a super fast pit stop, beating both out to gain two positions. As one of the most successful MotoGP riders of the modern era in Phillip Island it was never going to be easy for them to beat him, and they couldn’t. The Italian claimed third at the line to make it another double Yamaha podium.

The result leaves Lorenzo now on 280 points, 18 behind Marquez as they head to Motegi for the final of the triple-headers. Rossi stays secure in fourth position on 214 points, 35 ahead of Crutchlow in fifth.

Jorge Lorenzo – 1st / 29’07.155 / 19 laps

“I’m really happy with this win, we’ve also been lucky because Marc made this mistake. Without that he would have been second or first because he was really fast today. So we’ve been lucky but we were unlucky in the middle of the championship so today is a balance. When I was entering the first corner Marc was exiting the pit at exactly the same time, the situation was almost impossible to avoid. I was braking a little later to open the line and I don’t think he was looking so much entering the corner so it was both our fault. Now we have options, if Marc keeps constant on the podium then it is impossible to win the championship but there are a lot of laps to go so anything could happen. It’s unbelievable to have 50 Grand Prix victories at 26 years old. It seems like only yesterday when I won in Brazil in 2003 but it’s been ten years. I’m very proud of it and hope to win some more in the future!”

Valentino Rossi3rd / +12.344 / 19 laps

“At the end the result was good, I’m so happy to be on the podium here at Phillip Island because it’s always a great pleasure and a great atmosphere. I tried to give the maximum, the race was very thrilling and I enjoyed it very much, especially because with the team we were able to do a very good job in the pit and gain two positions. I had a great battle with Cal, when I understood it was for the podium I tried to give the maximum. In the last half of the lap it started to rain which was very scary but at the end it was ok and a good result. We still need to work and improve to be faster for the next race.”

Wilco Zeelenberg Team Manager

“A perfect result, winning here is a dream for us after two tough races. With Marc making the mistake it opens the championship a little more as well. 18 points is a completely different story to nearly 40. We are very pleased with that.”

Massimo Meregalli – Team Director

“It has been an incredible race, Jorge didn’t make any mistakes and led from the first to the last lap, always pushing hard. It was also nice to have the flag to flag in dry conditions and we got a lot of points to close the gap. There is only 18 points between them now so the championship is more open. We are looking to Motegi now to keep going and close it more. Vale did another great race, another double podium which is a great result for Yamaha. We had some doubts before the start of the race on grip but we got a great result.”

Results

1. Jorge Lorenzo (SPA) Yamaha Factory Racing 29’07.155
2. Dani Pedrosa (SPA) Repsol Honda Team + 6.936
3. Valentino Rossi (ITA) Yamaha Factory Racing + 12.344
4. Cal Crutchlow (GBR) Monster Yamaha Tech3 + 12.460
5. Alvaro Bautista (SPA) Go&Fun Honda Gresini + 12.513
6. Bradley Smith (GBR) Monster Yamaha Tech3 + 28.263
7. Nicky Hayden (USA) Ducati Team + 32.953
8. Andrea Iannone (ITA) Pramac Racing Team + 35.062
9. Andrea Dovizioso (ITA) Ducati Team + 35.104
10. Randy De Puniet (FRA) Power Electronics Aspar + 37.426
11. Aleix Espargaro (SPA) Power Electronics Aspar + 46.099
12. Colin Edwards (USA) NGM Mobile Forward Racing + 48.149
13. Yonny Hernandez (COL) Ignite Pramac Racing Team + 49.911
14. Hector Barbera (SPA) Avintia Blusens + 49.998
15. Danilo Petrucci (ITA) Came Iodaracing Project + 58.718
16. Luca Scassa (ITA) Cardion AB Motoracing + 58.791
17. Claudio Corti (ITA) NGM Mobile Forward Racing + 1’08.105
18. Michael Laverty (GBR) Paul Bird Motorsport + 1’27.230
19. Lukas Pesek (CZE) Came IodaRacing Project + 1’31.093
20. Hiroshi Aoyama (JPN) Avintia Blusens After 1 laps
21. Damian Cudlin (AUS) Paul Bird Motorsport After 2 laps
22. Bryan Staring (AUS) Go&Fun Honda Gresini Not classified (12 laps)
23. Marc Marquez (SPA) Repsol Honda Team Not classified (12 laps)

Championship Standings

1. Marc Marquez (SPA) Repsol Honda Team 298
2. Jorge Lorenzo (SPA) Yamaha Factory Racing 280
3. Dani Pedrosa (SPA) Repsol Honda Team 264
4. Valentino Rossi (ITA) Yamaha Factory Racing 214
5. Cal Crutchlow (GBR) Monster Yamaha Tech3 179
6. Alvaro Bautista (SPA) Go&Fun Honda Gresini 147
7. Stefan Bradl (GER) LCR Honda MotoGP 135
8. Andrea Dovizioso (ITA) Ducati Team 127
9. Nicky Hayden (USA) Ducati Team 111
10. Bradley Smith (GBR) Monster Yamaha Tech3 99
11. Aleix Espargaro (SPA) Power Electronics Aspar 88
12. Andrea Iannone (ITA) Pramac Racing Team 55
13. Michele Pirro (ITA) Ignite Pramac Racing 50
14. Colin Edwards (USA) NGM Mobile Forward Racing 36
15. Randy De Puniet (FRA) Power Electronics Aspar 33
16. Hector Barbera (SPA) Avintia Blusens 31
17. Danilo Petrucci (ITA) Came Iodaracing Project 24
18. Yonny Hernandez (COL) Ignite Pramac Racing Team 20
19. Hiroshi Aoyama (JPN) Avintia Blusens 13
20. Claudio Corti (ITA) NGM Mobile Forward Racing 11
21. Ben Spies (USA) Pramac Racing Team 9
22. Alex De Angelis (RSM) Ignite Pramac Racing 5
23. Karel Abraham (CZE) Cardion AB Motoracing 5
24. Michael Laverty (GBR) Paul Bird Motorsport 3
25. Bryan Staring (AUS) Go&Fun Honda Gresini 2
26. Javier Del Amor (SPA) Avintia Blusens 1

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