The hype, the drama and one final chance to perform in front of the home town crowd made Indianapolis Motor Speedway a forum for several American riders to "leave it all out on the track " before MotoGP departed the U.S. for the remainder of the season. But with so much happening off the racetrack, when all the cast members were in place, who really had what it took to steal the spotlight? Make the jump to find out.
[Source: MotoGP.com | Image: Mirco Lazzari GP/Getty Images]
The pressure to perform was high for rookie Ben Spies, with a start from pole position, the young American led the first six laps, giving us a glimpse of what may be on tap next season as he takes his confirmed factory Fiat-Yamaha seat. But by lap number seven Dani Pedrosa was able to guide his Repsol Honda past the rookie and into the lead, never looking back until he chased down the checker over 3.5 seconds faster than Spies. This left points leader Jorge Lorenzo, who despite posting the fastest warm up time, struggled from the start of the race and had to work hard for the low spot on the podium. Not only did Lorenzo relinquish precious championship points, but also his record of finishing in the top two positions in every race this season.
There was no champagne for Valentino Rossi at IMS, as he struggled to find a comfort zone despite his fourth place finish ahead of the Andrea Dovizioso's Honda who wouldn't yield easily to the reigning world champ. Sixth place went to the Kentucky Kid (Nicky Hayden) after acting as Grand Marshal for the flat-track championships at the Indy Mile and being confirmed to once again become Valentino Rossi's team-mate under the Ducati banner, at least for the next two years.
Several riders, including Stoner and Edwards, never found their way to the finish line at this year's event, but according to Dorna, everyone will have at least one more shot to come to terms with Indianapolis as an agreement was signed allowing MotoGP to return in 2011. Check out the standings below and get ready for the next race at San Morino.
Top ten finishers
|1||25||26||Dani PEDROSA||SPA||Repsol Honda Team||Honda||149.0||47'31.615|
|2||20||11||Ben SPIES||USA||Monster Yamaha Tech 3||Yamaha||148.8||+3.575|
|3||16||99||Jorge LORENZO||SPA||Fiat Yamaha Team||Yamaha||148.7||+6.812|
|4||13||46||Valentino ROSSI||ITA||Fiat Yamaha Team||Yamaha||148.4||+12.633|
|5||11||4||Andrea DOVIZIOSO||ITA||Repsol Honda Team||Honda||147.9||+21.885|
|6||10||69||Nicky HAYDEN||USA||Ducati Team||Ducati||147.2||+35.138|
|7||9||58||Marco SIMONCELLI||ITA||San Carlo Honda Gresini||Honda||147.1||+36.740|
|8||8||19||Alvaro BAUTISTA||SPA||Rizla Suzuki MotoGP||Suzuki||147.1||+36.825|
|9||7||41||Aleix ESPARGARO||SPA||Pramac Racing Team||Ducati||146.7||+44.905|
|10||6||40||Hector BARBERA||SPA||Paginas Amarillas Aspar||Ducati||146.4||+51.368|
|8||Randy DE PUNIET||Honda||FRA||78|