breathed new life into his 2011 MotoGP world championship challenge in Misano yesterday with a stunning surge to his third victory of the season. Lorenzo made his intentions clear right from the off when he seized the lead from Casey Stoner with a daring move on the brakes for the first corner.
The reigning world champion then survived intense pressure from Repsol Honda rider Stoner in the first 11 laps before the Aussie had to call off his pursuit with fatigue setting in. Stoner would eventually fade back to third and Lorenzo’s second victory on Italian soil in 2011 claimed nine precious points back in the championship chase.
Lorenzo said: “It is a big result for me and Yamaha. It is great to be back winning and in Italy again and it feels special to be back after two disastrous races in Brno and Indianapolis. It has been a little nightmare because we’ve finished so far behind the winner with a very bad feeling on the bike. But here we had a great bike and I could be as fast as I know I can be. I did a great start but the Honda has a little more acceleration in the first gears but I really wanted to be in first place on the first lap to try and open a gap. I was really worried about the weather because it was raining for two or three laps, so I was praying for it not to rain. In the first 15 laps I pushed very hard but Casey was still there, so I kept pushing for two or three laps and thinking if I can’t escape then I would let him pass. But on one lap I saw 0.3s on my board and I pushed a little bit more with a 33.8 and the gap increased until I had a little advantage and then I could relax and enjoy the riding.”
Although his victory by over seven seconds ahead of compatriot Dani Pedrosa rekindled his title hopes, he added: “I don’t think about the championship. I only think about trying to win the next races. Now though we have some more options.”