Aragon MotoGP: Team orders not a factor, says Ben Spies

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Ben Spies says he doesn’t expect team orders to come into play during tomorrow’s Motorland Aragon race after he outpaced factory Yamaha team-mate Jorge Lorenzo in qualifying.

Spies will start tomorrow’s 23-lap race from third place on the grid, with a lap of 1.49.155 securing him his fourth front row start of 2011.

Lorenzo though was only fourth fastest and he’s struggled all weekend to match the pace of championship rival Casey Stoner, who will start from pole position for the ninth time this season.

Lorenzo clocked a best time of 1.49.270 to finish 0.819s behind Aussie Stoner, as he missed the front row for only the fourth time in 14 races.

The Spaniard goes into tomorrow’s race trailing Stoner by 35-points with only five rounds remaining, but Texan Spies said team orders had not even been discussed at Yamaha.

Controversial team orders have not been enforced at Repsol Honda after Dani Pedrosa passed Stoner late in the last race in Misano to take four points away from the 2007 world champion.

Spies also caught and passed Lorenzo for third in Indianapolis last month and the 2009 World Superbike champion said: “For me there’s been no team orders. We saw that at Indy when I passed Jorge. In Misano, Dani (Pedrosa) was able to pass Casey at the end and that’s racing and the way it should be.

"When a championship is won because somebody let somebody else beat them then I don’t like it so much. But I haven’t heard anything and I don’t plan on riding any differently. Whoever is in front of me I’ll be trying to pass them.”

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Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt