Assen MotoGP: Dutch delight for Jorge Lorenzo
Jorge Lorenzo strengthened his iron grip on the 2010 MotoGP world championship with a commanding start-to-finish success at Assen this afternoon.
Lorenzo grabbed the holeshot from Monster Yamaha Tech 3 rider Ben Spies and he was able to quickly open up a comfortable lead.
He led Texan Spies by over 0.6s at the end of the first lap and with Dani Pedrosa and Casey Stoner struggling to find a way by Spies, Lorenzo threatened another runaway success to mirror his dominance of last weekend’s Silverstone race.
But it wasn’t all easy for the 23-year-old as he tried to make a clear break from the chasing pack.
Once Repsol Honda rider Pedrosa had passed Spies on lap three, he immediately began a surprise pursuit of his fellow Spaniard.
And when Aussie Stoner took third from Spies at the first corner on lap four, that helped push Pedrosa closer to Lorenzo’s Fiat Yamaha.
Pedrosa and Stoner had cut the gap to 0.2s when Lorenzo decided he was going to up his pace and make a decisive break on lap 11.
In three laps from 11 to 13 he tookover 0.7s out of Pedrosa and continued to streak away to extend his lead in the world championship to a commanding 47-points ahead of Pedrosa.
Lorenzo has now won four races out of six in 2010 and has collected an incredible 115-points out of a possible 125.
Pedrosa got a typically lightning start from seventh on the grid but once Lorenzo pushed at the halfway stage, he had no answer.
But fears he might succumb to the threat of Stoner quickly diminished as he pulled away from the factory Ducati rider with relative ease in the final third of the 26-lap clash.
By lap 18, Pedrosa had stretched his advantage over the 2007 world champion to 1.555s and he ended in a lonely second to quickly forget his miserable eighth place at Silverstone.
Stoner took a lonely third to claim his first podium of the season and his first since the Malaysian GP at Sepang way back in October.
Reigning World Superbike champion Spies added a superb fourth to his maiden podium at Silverstone last weekend.
Unable to stay with the leading trio after a terrific start, Spies produced a devastating last ten laps.
He passed Andrea Dovizioso for fourth on lap 16 and was able to open up a small gap over the Italian.
Frenchman Randy de Puniet, who made an awful start from second on the grid, then took fifth from Dovizioso on lap 18 before both then started to close back on Spies.
Spies though responded superbly to the pressure and streaked away to ensure he wasn’t susceptible to an attack in the closing stages.
And Dovizioso took fourth place having survived a gutsy last lap attack from LCR Honda rider de Puniet.
Dovizioso was able to secure fifth – only the second time this season he’s not finished on the podium – with de Puniet making a failed overtake at the final chicane.
Nicky Hayden was a disappointing seventh and Colin Edwards eighth.