Jorge Lorenzo admitted he got his tactics wrong in the closing stages of a thrilling Brno MotoGP yesterday (Sunday) after he suffered a last lap defeat to title rival Dani Pedrosa.
Lorenzo had seized the lead from his Repsol Honda rival with a daring move at Turn 7, but he was undone at the final chicane after running wide and letting Pedrosa snatch a stunning last gasp win.
Lorenzo, who now leads Pedrosa by just 13-points with six races remaining, said his strategy on the uphill approach to the final chicane had been wrong and Pedrosa had punished him with a brave move.
Lorenzo said: “It was a very funny race. When two riders are so similar on pace and on the lap time it is a close race to the end. When you see a victory so close you try to do everything but it was difficult to overtake Dani on the brakes because he was braking later than normal. I was stronger with corner speed and when it came to the last lap I saw a little space and I imagined us together on the ground but luckily I got to overtake him without a crash. I was thinking of winning but maybe I make a mistake going uphill and going so wide and he take profit of his light weight and the acceleration of his bike to keep the best line. I tried from the outside of the corner before the last one but I enter too close and he has faster speed and it was impossible to win this race. He was very brave and he wanted it and we have to learn from it for the next time. My strategy on the uphill was not good but it is a good lesson for the future.”
Lorenzo’s pass on Pedrosa at Turn 7 is not one witnessed often at Brno but it is a move that has served Lorenzo well in the past.
He added: “I made this pass in 2004 when I won the race with a big group of riders. I was fighting with (Hector) Barbera for the win and he opened the line a little bit and I took the first position and it was very similar to this race. It was the only way to overtake Dani because we struggled a bit on braking. So the only way to pass him was in the chicanes or in this corner. I was planning to pass him at the corner before on the inside but he closed the line a lot. I went the opposite way to open my line a bit more and pass him at this corner. It still didn’t make us win and we must learn from this. I hope next time the result will be different.”
With his title lead now reduced to 13-points heading to the next race in Misano on September 16, Lorenzo said he was still confident that he will emerge triumphant at the end of the season.
He said: “It is getting closer and we have finished in second place in the last three races. They (Honda) have improved the bike and for us it is difficult. But I am very optimistic and constant as we are always on the podium and better times will come in the future.”
For seven pages of coverage from the Brno MotoGP, see the August 29 issue of Motor Cycle News.