Casey Stoner claimed the first victory for Ducati at the Sachsenring today at the German GP

Casey Stoner claimed the first victory for Ducati at the Sachsenring today at the German GP

 

Sachsenring MotoGP: Casey Stoner cruises to victory at the German GP

By James Keen -

MotoGP

 13 July 2008 12:30

Casey Stoner claimed a comfortable victory at the Sachsenring in Germany after early leader Dani Pedroda crashed out of the race. Valentino Rossi took second and Rizla Suzuki rider Chris Vermeulen took third place on the podium, making it a good day for Australian MotoGP fans everywhere.

The rain had really started to come down by the time the MotoGP boys took their places on the grid at the Sachsenring. Casey Stoner was in pole position on the start line, followed by Dani Pedrosa in second and Colin Edwards in third on the Tech 3 Yamaha.

When the lights went out Dani Pedrosa on the Repsol Honda typically shot out ahead to take an early lead, no doubt helped by his weight advantage. Shortly after Casey Stoner passed Andrea Dovizioso and settled into second place in the field.

With 29 laps still to go Pedrosa had already opened up a 2.1 second gap on the rest of the pack. Meanwhile James Toseland, who had taken advantage of a good start to move up into fifth place, dropped back drastically to 11th as a few faster riders made their way through the pack.

Less than a lap later Jorge Lorenzo crashed out on a corner exit while up at the front, Pedrosa was busy stretching his lead over Casey Stoner out to 6 seconds.

With 25 laps still to go in the German GP, front runner Dani Pedrosa locked the front on his Repsol Honda under braking, putting him out of the race after a very promising start and leaving Ducati Marlboro rider Casey Stoner in first place.

Valentino Rossi had worked his way up the pack by this point and found himself in second place behind Casey Stoner, pushing Edwards back to third and Dovizioso back to fourth. With 21 laps to go, Stoner was already way out in front with a 3 sec advantage and Marco Melandri had crashed out due to the tricky conditions on the wet track.

2 laps later Stoner had opened up a 2.9 second gap over second place Fiat Yamaha rider Valentino Rossi. With 15 laps left, Vermeulen (ever the good wet rider) was up into third place but there was still over a second between him and Rossi. Only 3 laps later, this gap had increased to over 4 seconds as Stoner and Rossi pulled out ahead on their own.

With 10 laps still to go, the heavy rain at the Sachsenring caught out Colin Edwards and he uncharacteristically crashed out of the German GP. As the conditions spread out the remaining pack, Stoner settled comfortably into first, with Rossi in second, Vermeulen in third and Alex De Angelis in fourth.

With the front of the pack spread out across the track, the top two riders Stoner and Rossi settled into a comfortable rhythm. Third position rider Chris Vermeulen had to fend off Alex De Angelis, but managed to hold his position and claim third place on the podium.

1  Casey STONER   AUS  Ducati Marlboro Team   Ducati   47'30.057   
2  Valentino ROSSI  ITA  Fiat Yamaha Team   Yamaha   47'33.765  
3  Chris VERMEULEN  AUS  Rizla Suzuki MotoGP   Suzuki   47'44.059  
4  Alex DE ANGELIS  RSM  San Carlo Honda Gresini  Honda   47'44.181  
5  Andrea DOVIZIOSO  ITA  JiR Team Scot MotoGP   Honda   48'12.079  
6  Sylvain GUINTOLI  FRA  Alice Team    Ducati   48'16.705  
7  Loris CAPIROSSI  ITA  Rizla Suzuki MotoGP   Suzuki   48'34.540  
8  Randy DE PUNIET  FRA  LCR Honda MotoGP   Honda   48'34.645  
9  Shinya NAKANO   JPN  San Carlo Honda Gresini  Honda   48'46.830  
10  Anthony WEST   AUS  Kawasaki Racing Team   Kawasaki  48'59.332  
11  James TOSELAND   GBR  Tech 3 Yamaha    Yamaha   47'41.757  
12  Toni ELIAS   SPA  Alice Team    Ducati   47'43.954  
13  Nicky HAYDEN   USA  Repsol Honda Team   Honda   48'13.749
 
Not classified
 Colin EDWARDS   USA  Tech 3 Yamaha    Yamaha   
 Marco MELANDRI   ITA  Ducati Marlboro Team   Ducati   
 Dani PEDROSA   SPA  Repsol Honda Team   Honda   
 Jorge LORENZO   SPA  Fiat Yamaha Team   Yamaha