Motegi MotoGP reaction: Loris Capirossi completes Motegi hat-trick
Loris Capirossi completed a stunning hat-trick of victories at the Japanese GP at the end of a dramatic race in the Twin Ring Motegi.
On a great day for Ducati, not only did Capirossi win his third successive Japanese GP, but Aussie team-mate Casey Stoner wrapped up the MotoGP world championship with sixth place.
Making it even sweeter for the Bologna factory that today’s historic achievement came in Honda’s backyard.
Capirossi, who has been at odds all season with the factory GP7 having been completely dominated by Stoner, claimed an easy victory by 10.8s from Kawasaki’s Randy de Puniet.
After his decision to pit on lap nine for his GP7 fitted on slick tyres as the circuit dried rapidly following early persistent rain, Capirossi was virtually unstoppable.
He took the lead on 15 and never relinquished it, though he admitted he had struggled early on in the wet part of the race having chosen a hard compound wet Bridgestone rear tyre.
He was only 14th at the end of the first lap but the delighted 34-year-old, who will move to Suzuki in 2008, said: “This is a really amazing moment, not only the result. I win three times in a row here in Motegi.
"Today the condition is a gamble because we start with the rain conditions.
"I lost some positions at the beginning but lap-by-lap I looked at the track and I say OK, this is a good time to change tyre.
"For sure this is the right moment.
"Only the last part of the track was wet, so I don’t risk a lot in that point.
"After a couple of laps I saw I was in first position with ten seconds over second.
"And I say, OK, we have again a good opportunity to win.
"I am really happy. I had nothing to lose and after a really hard season to win again is really good.
" I am happy also because from the first victory of my career to this is 17 years. I think nobody beat me for that.”
Capirossi also paid tribute to team-mate, who clinched Ducati’s first world title in MotoGP despite scoring his worst result of the season in the flag-to-flag clash.
He added: “I am happy because Casey is the world champion with Ducati.
"For sure Casey made a great season this year because he never made a mistake and he tried hard always.
"But one small part of his world championship is also mine because I start to work in this project from the beginning.
"But anyway, Casey is world champion and congratulations to him.”