STONER EXTENDS CHAMPIONSHIP LEAD
Australia's Casey Stoner has extended his lead in the MotoGP World Championship after a dramatic weekend at Assen in the Netherlands.
The Honda rider finished second to American Ben Spies who took his maiden MotoGP win with a finely-controlled race.
In cool and slippery conditions, most riders on the grid opted for the softer Bridgestone front and rear slick tyres. However a chaotic start to the race saw pole-sitter Marco Simoncelli and Jorge Lorenzo collide on the third corner after the Italian lost grip of his bike and wiped the defending champion off the track.
Spies, who started on the front row, capitalised on this to create a lead he would never relinquish.
"We would have liked to challenge for the win, but the way this weekend has gone for us I'm really very happy for a podium finish and to take some valuable points," Stoner said.
"I tried everything possible to catch him, but he was able to retain the advantage and start to pull some more, so my congratulations to Ben - he rode a great race. For us it was just important to get points today."
Hirohide Hamashima, Assistant to Director of Bridgestone's Motorsport Tyre Development Division, said the cool conditions made tyre choice tricky for the riders.
"The conditions today were cold and damp in places which meant that almost all riders used the softer option front and rear slicks," he said.
"The soft compound front was used for its improved warm-up performance and grip with the low temperature, but the compromise of this means that tyre wear was therefore higher."
The next round of the 2011 Championship takes place at Mugello for the Italian Grand Prix on July 3rd.
|1. ||Casey Stoner (Aus) ||136 points |
|2. ||Jorge Lorenzo (Sp) ||108 |
|3. ||Andrea Dovizioso (It) ||99 |