MotoGP Results Australian Grand Prix - Phillip Island2007-10-14 09:23
Victorious Stoner homecoming puts Ducati on cloud nine
A triumphant homecoming for Casey Stoner at Phillip Island, at the head of a Ducati one-two with Loris Capirossi, gave the Italian factory the Constructors and Teams World Championship in perfect fashion at the GMC Australian Grand Prix.
In his first race since clinching the riders World Championship at Motegi from outside the podium spots, Stoner was able to start the celebrations in earnest with victory number nine of his flawless 2007 season. The Australian joins the likes of Mick Doohan and Wayne Gardner in winning his home race after taking the premier class title, and did so by storming away from the pack right from the off. Given some early trouble by World Championship predecessor Nicky Hayden, once the American had been eliminated from the equation with a mechanical problem Stoner could go about his business without needing to look over his shoulder too frequently. He eventually took victory by nearly seven seconds.
Following on from his own 2007 highlight at Motegi - his only win to date with an 800cc machine- Loris Capirossi ensured his presence at the forefront of the Ducati celebrations by bursting through the field and taking second place. The Italian, who has been one of the key factors behind Ducati's success since the creation of the MotoGP project, battled with old rival Valentino Rossi and Honda rider Dani Pedrosa for the podium place and continued his recent resurgence of form.
Rossi, never off the podium in his seven visits to Phillip Island in MotoGP, completed the rostrum places and all but confirmed his second place in the 2007 standings. The Yamaha factory man was eventually too much for poleman Pedrosa, whose strange crash in the morning warmup when undertaking a practice start may have been the cause of a nervous opening for the Spaniard.
Alex Barros took fifth from his highest grid placing of the season, ahead of Randy de Puniet, whilst the Suzuki duo of John Hopkins and Chris Vermeulen sneaked up the standings from lowly qualifying positions. The two remain virtually inseparable in the battle for fourth place in the overall classification, experiencing their best ever seasons in MotoGP.
Colin Edwards and Marco Melandri completed the top ten, with the latter making an unfortunate drop down the placings after providing much excitement in the early going.
A dominant win for Jorge Lorenzo in the 250cc category, nearly 20 seconds ahead of his nearest rival in the race, took the Spaniard one step closer to retaining his quarter litre title. As with all his victories this year, the Aprilia rider took the triumph from pole position, and never looked to be in trouble en route to win number nine of the 2007 season.
Alvaro Bautista's last gasp move to snatch second, at the scene of his 2006 125cc world title victory, further helped out his countryman Lorenzo. The Aspar rider's relegation of Andrea Dovizioso to third place stretches the gap between the Italian and the current series leader to 45 points with only 50 more up for grabs.
The final two rostrum places could have been anybody's in a closely packed top six, with Hiroshi Aoyama, Thomas Luthi and Julian Simon all battling amongst themselves and with the duo of Bautista and Dovizioso. Alex de Angelis' slim chance of becoming World Champion was put to rest following his ninth place finish, behind Marco Simoncelli and Shuhei Aoyama. Yuki Takahashi completed the top ten.
Thrust back into the limelight after a string of disappointing races, Lukas Pesek took the second win of his career in the 125cc race at Phillip Island. The Czech rider had his hands full as part of a top eight separated by less than 1.5 seconds, holding off Joan Olive and World Championship contender Hector Faubel in the final dash for the line.
Pesek's win is his first since his maiden victory in China, and the Derbi racer has been off the podium and outside the top ten since his home podium at Brno after the summer break. He had established a small gap at the midway point of a frantic shootout, but was caught by his pursuers and had to go through it all again in the final few laps.
Olive returns to the rostrum for the first time since Turkey, and amongst those pleased with the Spaniard's demoting Faubel to third will be Gabor Talmacsi, the current World Championship leader who maintains his top spot by a solitary point. The Hungarian himself could only manage an eighth place finish at Phillip Island, and the battle between himself and team-mate Faubel will now almost certainly go right down to the wire and the Spaniard's home race in Valencia.
Simone Corsi took fourth after a late surge, ahead of an impressive Esteve Rabat who was the bravest on the brakes all afternoon onboard the Repsol Honda. Tomoyoshi Koyama was unable to bounce back from his Motegi disappointment in sixth, ahead of poleman Mattia Pasini, Talmacsi, Sergio Gadea and Sandro Cortese.
Source: Dorna Communications
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