MotoGP rides the Ring

Race will air on network TV

By Motorcycle.Com Staff, Jul. 11, 2008
The MotoGP tour enters its second half with a stop at Sachsenring for the German Grand Prix, July 13. American race fans will have a chance to watch the race as CBS will air a same-day delayed broadcast of the race at 1 pm ET.

Dani Pedrosa will look to increase his lead in the MotoGP standings by repeating the success he had in last year’s Sachsenring race. Pedrosa was dominant in the 2007 German Grand Prix while teammate Nicky Hayden took third place to give Repsol Honda a double podium.

“We are working very hard at the moment, trying to improve our performance. We will do our best to repeat my 2007 German GP win but we know it won’t be easy,” says Pedrosa. “Sachsenring is quite a slow track; most of the corners aren’t so fast. My favorite section is the final, faster part: the fast, downhill right-hander near the end of the lap and then the uphill run into the final corner.”

Hayden will again be riding on a pneumatic-valve engine and he hopes the electronics problem that saw his RC212V unexpectedly run out of fuel on the final stretch of the Dutch TT will not resurface.

“The bike is working good, the engine is running plenty good, but we just had that little issue at the end of Assen which stopped me getting third. I’m sure the guys at HRC will have the electronics all fixed for this race because I quite like the Sachsenring and I’ve always gone pretty well there,” says Hayden. “It’s a short little lap and some people complain it’s too tight and twisty but I like fast left-hand corners and it’s got a lot of them. I’m a dirt tracker so I like going left!

“The first bit is quite technical, then you’ve got that fifth-gear drop-off round the back which is really good, definitely one of the best. The key for going down that hill is getting the bike so you’re confident in the front. The next right-hander (Turn 12) is a big one, it’s blind and it’s downhill, so you can’t go tip-toeing through there if you want a good lap, you’ve got to be committed and charge it. Last year the track had a new surface because tire wear had been a big issue there.”

Meanwhile, Fiat Yamaha rider Valentino Rossi will look to rebound from a poor showing in Assen that cost him the championship lead.Casey Stoner has won two races in a row but has never won a Grand Prix race at Sachsenring.

“Last year in Sachsenring I made a mistake and crashed, and at the last race in Assen I also made a mistake, so I hope that I’ve now had my bad moment for this year!” says Rossi. “We are going there having lost our championship lead but we’re only four points behind so the situation is certainly much better than it was at this point last season. I was disappointed with myself in Assen because I missed a great chance but I have put that behind me and I am completely focused on the next race now. We need to be at 100% from the first practice and hopefully we can have a good weekend with no more mistakes!”

Creeping up on Pedrosa and Rossi in the standings is 2007 champion Casey Stoner. The Ducati Marlboro rider arrives in Germany after earning consecutive victories at the British Grand Prix and the Dutch TT.

“The bike has been perfect for the last two races and I expect it to go well at Sachsenring too,” says Stoner. “The track is a little different to most of the others because there are such long corners, which I don't like too much, but there are also some fun points and I'm happy to go racing there.”

MotoGP standings after nine races

Pos. Rider Team Points
1. Dani Pedrosa Repsol Honda 171
2. Valentino Rossi Fiat Yamaha 167
3. Casey Stoner Ducati Marlboro 142
4. Jorge Lorenzo Fiat Yamaha 114
5. Colin Edwards Tech 3 Yamaha 98