Casey Stoner totally dominated the Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix to take his 7th Grand Prix win of the season from his 7th pole position and smashed the lap record as he did it. Fellow Red Bull athlete and Honda team mate Dani Pedrosa was the only one to come close to challenging him but was almost 5 seconds behind at the flag.
Pedrosa knew he had to take the battle to the Championship leader and did so with another of his incredible starts, coming from the 2nd row and passing Stoner on the charge into Turn One. Reigning World Champion Jorge Lorenzo also went past into 2nd and briefly at least it looked as though Stoner had a race on his hands even though he had been totally superior throughout practice.
Stoner was confident though and in no hurry, he waited for the tyres to come in fully then passed Lorenzo to capture 2nd as they raced across the famous yard of bricks to start lap 3. He then chased down Pedrosa.
With 5 lap gone Stoner was closing on Pedrosa, Marco Simoncelli passed Lorenzo for 3rd, Niki Hayden passed Andres Dovizioso for 5th. Then a big moment for Simoncelli coming on to the start and finish, Lorenzo got back into 3rd and incredibly that was Simoncelli's race, he went rapidly backwards from there to finish 12th with obvious tyre wear problems. Similar demons hit the Ducatis of Hayden and Valentino Rossi and Hayden reversed into 14th while Rossi managed 10th
With 22 of the 28 laps still to go Stoner passes Pedrosa into turn 1 and the victory was decided there. Once ahead Stoner steadily extended his lead and the racing interest turned back to Ben Spies who had made a disastrous start from 2nd on the grid to complete the 1st lap in 9th. He fought back though and eventually took 3rd from Yamaha team mate Lorenzo.
Another win for Stoner and this time at the only circuit on the calendar where he has not previously been on the podium. So was this win particularly crucial as he extended his lead to 44 points over Lorenzo? “There are crucial points throughout the season, we just have to keep our heads down and try to keep winning races. We worked hard and had a good set up, I wasn't happy with the grip but it seems like compared with everyone else things weren't so bad, The race wasn't easy, at least the first few laps but then I got into a rhythm and the bike was working well so I have to thank the team for that and I just had to keep up the concentration, make sure I didn't make any mistakes and stayed away from the slippery sections of track off line.”
Pedrosa said that the race went better than he expected. “I am very very happy because in practice I was a second off so didn't expect to race with Casey and Ben here. But the team did a great job and we found something so thanks to them and the race was hard but I was a lot happier on the bike than I had been in practice.”
Marquez wins Moto2 and closes on Bradl
Marquez took a fabulous victory in the Moto2 race and with Championship leader Stefan Bradl only finishing 6th the Red Bull athlete has closed the points gap to just 28 with 6 races still remaining.
Marquez set off from pole and was with the leaders from the start and when he made the decisive move into the lead on lap 8 of the 26 no one had any serious response. While he almost casually stretched his advantage arch rival Bradl was fighting even to get into the points after finishing the 1st lap 19th from 22nd on the grid, hindered by a crash in free practice.
“Sure it's important for the championship,” said reigning 125 World Champion Marquez. “Here though Bradl had some troubles so maybe that can happen to me in Misano so I have to remain very concentrated and remember that 6 races remain so I want to be happy but have to keep focused. The race was difficult, especially in the end because the tyres are completely destroyed. In the beginning I didn't have the same feeling I did in practice but gradually it came and I started to push, then I could get in front and get a gap. Then in the end I managed that gap.”
Terol expends 125cc Championship lead.
Nicolas Terol looked in a class of his own and scored a comfortable victory to extend his Championship lead to 26 points over ex Red Bull Rookies Cup winner Johann Zarco who finished 5th. It was a frustrating day for the Red Bull Ajo MotorSport team as Danny Kent had qualified 5th but ran wide and had to fight back from 18th to 13th with team mate Jonas Folger 9th in his return to racing from sickness.