• 5
As the action continues relentlessly in the premier venue of motorcycle racing, round three took us to the land of champagne and baguette, as the French race lent the first glimpse of clarity into how the championship fight might turn out.

Straight out of the chutes, Fiat-Yamaha rider and international superstar Valentino Rossi converted a great start into an early lead, while Dani Pedrosa and points leader Jorge Lorenzo brought on the chase. The Yamahas were quickly one-two as Lorenzo passed Pedrosa and began to close the gap on Rossi. By lap seven, the points leader made his move for the front, only to see Rossi respond almost immediately to reclaim the lead. After ten loops, Lorenzo put a pass on that would stick, and was able to hold a convincing five-second lead as he passed the checkers, extending his overall points margin to nine ahead of Rossi, who repeated his second place finish from Spain. This also marked a third straight top finish for a Yamaha pilot in as many rounds, a feat that has not been repeated since 1980.

Behind the leaders, the battle to round out the top five was an intense one, using up the entire race to play out. During a dramatic final lap we saw Pedrosa surrender two positions in another battle of teammates, allowing Andrea Dovizioso to squeak by followed by the hard-charging Ducati topped by Nicky Hayden, who again carried the red team's results. Casey Stoner struggled and was put out of the race early due to a turn-six crash that he would be unable to return from, begging the question of whether his mind has already departed for Japan? Next stop: June 6th for all things Italian at Mugello and a chance for dethronement of the Yamahas. We can hardly wait!

[Source: MotoGP.com | Image: AP Photo/David Vincent]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 4 Years Ago
      Yeah, Hayden looked good. Pedrosa choked big time on that last lap. Really got rattled.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Lorenzo is getting better and better, learning everything he can from Valentino.
      He could be the next big thing, Stoner looks like is a weak character, he can't stand the pressure.

        • 4 Years Ago
        Well, he's crashing less at least :P

        I'm pleased to see Hayden's performance on the Ducati's, it helps dispel the myth that only Stoner can ride Ducati.

        Rossi was -really- not happy with Yamaha re-signing Lorenzo, his words: "I don't think he deserves it." Of the riders, if anyone was to jump for Ducati I'd think it be him, certainly Ducati wants an "Italian Dream Team." As much as Lorenzo proves he can be a formidable challenge for The Doctor, I just think Ducati would really prefer an Italian at the helm, but then again: who wouldn't want Rossi in their camp?

        I agree with you on Stoner though, he's often shown he has issues being a bull. He's been soft where he should have been aggressive, especially the end of 08 and 09.

        Of course we can't discount Spies potential in all of this.

        What I wanna know is when is Haga gonna get his Moto GP Shot! He deserves a satellite team chance at least.

      • 4 Years Ago
      Gooooooooo Yamaha!
      • 4 Years Ago
      Another great outing by Hayden! He had great start and fantastic pass on Pedrosa on the final lap to take 4th!

      Moto GP is consistently the best race of the weekend whenever it's on.