Rossi, Lorenzo and Pedrosa against MotoGP stops

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Phillip Island podium finishers Jorge Lorenzo, Dani Pedrosa and Valentino Rossi have said pits stops in MotoGP should not become a regular event, despite the intrigue and excitement created in an incident-packed Australian Grand Prix.

Major issues with tyre wear on a new track surface meant for the first time ever, Race Direction implemented a mandatory pit stop in a shortened 19-lap race to counter fears of severe overheating and blistering from the tyres available from Bridgestone.
Every rider was obliged to pull into the pits to switch to machinery fitted with fresh rubber during a two-lap window on laps nine and 10.

The major talking point of the race came with world championship leader Marc Marquez racing on beyond lap 10, which resulted in a disqualification for the Repsol Honda that cost him the chance to edge closer to a historic first premier class world title.

Lorenzo’s sixth victory thrust him firmly back into title contention to retain his title now the factory Yamaha rider heads to this weekend’s Twin Ring Motegi race just 18-points behind rookie Marquez.

He might have won a tense Australian race for the first time to notch a landmark 50th career success but Lorenzo doesn’t want to become involved in a similar situation in the future.

He said: “For me it's not a good option. In the pits there are so many bikes. On the second part I almost crashed because the front brake was too cold but everything is worse, braking and the tyres. Everything is worse and more dangerous than in a normal race. We have to race in the flag-to-flag situation in changing conditions but in the dry like this it is not the best solution.”

Runner-up Pedrosa, who was the only one of the top three to pit after nine laps, said his preference would be to avoid a dry flag-to-flag race and the Spaniard said: “It was OK because it was an emergency, but there are many things that count here. There was the new asphalt, which had a lot of grip and you have to change everything in the championship to do races like this. I don’t see motorcycle races being more than one stint flat-out in the future.”

Italian Rossi said the unusual format had been exciting and a different experience but he agreed that it was better only to see a repeat in exceptional circumstances.
The nine-times world champion, who got the better of a terrific fight for third with Cal Crutchlow and Alvaro Bautista, said: “Sincerely I like it, but it is better as normal. Here it was an emergency but a longer race with one or two stops could be an option for the future. I enjoyed it a lot but it is better to keep it like normal. This was more for an emergency and a normal race is much better.”


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Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt