Rossi earns ninth win in Sepang

150th podium finish for MotoGP World Champion

By Staff, Oct. 20, 2008
Valentino Rossi took victory number nine of his 2008 season in the Polini Malaysian Motorcycle Grand Prix with a time of 43'06.007. Rossi was able to escape from the clutches of Dani Pedrosa in the final third of an exciting race at the Sepang circuit.

Rossi is only the second rider in the history of the sport to pass this milestone, the other being Giacomo Agostini, whose all-time win record Rossi has already broken this season.

With this latest race, Rossi extends his run of podium finishes to eight consecutive Grand Prix, with a chance for win number ten in total in Valencia at next weekend’s season finale. Pedrosa placed inside the top three in Sepang for the third time in as many premier class visits to the Malaysian track, although it was not enough to keep the battle for the runner-up spot in the 2008 World Championship standings alive. Nonetheless, the Spaniard recorded his best race result on Bridgestone tires, after taking his first pole for the Japanese manufacturer on Saturday afternoon.

“The conditions were unbelievable because the temperatures were incredible out there,” says Rossi. “We worked hard to get the M1 strong during the winter here, and we knew that the bike was suitable for the type of corners that we have here. I’m happy because it’s my ninth victory of the year; I like this number and will try for ten in Valencia!”

Other big news from the race included rookie Andrea Dovizioso getting his first career MotoGP podium finish after edging out Nicky Hayden, the man he'll be replacing on the factory Repsol Honda team in 2009. The JiR Team Scot rider also moved further into contention for the Rookie of the Year honor as his result combined with a crash from rival Jorge Lorenzo.