Motoette -in forward motion

MotoGP riders on a quest for gold in the Wild West

MotoGP: Laguna Seca Pre Race Review

The Red Bull US Grand Prix at Laguna Seca will be the host to the 10th round of the GP roster. This beautifully laid out track, reintroduced to the premiere riders back in 2006, sits atop of a small mountain overlooking the intimate Monterey Bay in Seaside California. Laguna Seca may not look like much on the map, but to the mass majority of the GP riders, the 2.2 mile circuit is a favorite with its impressive undulating elevations changes, 7 left corners and 4 right turns and the famous “cork screw” turn that presents itself rather suddenly at the peak of the compact track.

With a short race week break, the premiere riders make their transatlantic trek to the west coast, stateside, in preparation for Friday’s first practice round. Laguna Seca will mark the end to a multi-packed 6 races in 8 weeks, giving the riders a much-needed 3 week summer break before going on to Brno.

Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa is riding high on his unexpected podium win last weekend in Sachsenring. The recovering Spaniard made his first debut in 2006 at the Northern California-based track, claiming second on the podium and becoming the first GP rider to win, representing the Spanish banner in 2009.

Teammate, Casey Stoner is still the man to watch with his seventh straight podium win and is the current top premiere rider in standings. Yamaha’s World Champion Jorge Lorenzo will be close behind, chasing the frontrunner with only a 15 point gap as of last weekend with his 2nd place win.

The 3rd Repsol Honda rider, Andrea Dovizioso, has much to prove at Laguna with two close, but no cigar, podium finishes and a mere 21 points behind Lorenzo, making motivation high in priority with the reserved Italian.

Factory Ducati’s Valentino Rossi finished on the US track on the podium last year despite racing with a nasty leg injury. It was touch and go as to whether the personable Italian would actually make the race at all with only one race to his credit after the debilitating fall. The hair-free rider is amazingly 4th in standings, but continues to have growing pains this season with the Factory Ducati brand, but will welcome back his right-hand-man crew-chief, Jerry Burgess with open arms after a short absence due to personal reasons.

Of course, the 3 American riders, Yamaha’s Ben Spies, Ducati’s Nicky Hayden and Monster Yamaha Tech 3’s Colin Edwards will be only too eager to make their way around their patriotic homeland track this weekend. Anxious to score some much-needed points, while soaking up the familiar California rays. Spies and Edwards hope to follow in their compatriots footsteps and be added to the list of seven American riders to take a World Championship at Laguna in the 12 premiere class races that have been held there since 1957.

Up coming events for the race weekend:

American WSBK rider, Ben Bostrom will be pairing up with LCR Honda’s Toni Elias as a wild card entry at the Red Bull US Grand Prix. The invite came as a result of a well established relationship between the LCR team and Ben’s management team, Michael Jordan Motorsports. The partnership will include two races in the United States for the 2011 season.

Ben saying: “Words can’t express how excited I am to get this amazing opportunity to race on my home track in front of the whole world. I have to thank Michael Jordan Motorsports and American Suzuki for allowing this to happen. The collaboration between Lucio, LCR and the MJM team has been terrific. I’m going to get on the GP bike and put it as close to the front as possible. Then I’m going to hop on my Jordan Suzuki bike and try to create even more magic.”

WSBK Frenchman, Sylvain Guintoli, is being held on stand by to replace veteran Italian Pramac Ducati rider, Loris Capirossi, who still remains questionable to ride for the race weekend due to injury.

Also, in the continuance of the Yamaha’s 50 year celebration in MotoGP, the factory team will once again display the red and white classic livery as they did in Assen. Local to northern California, legendary GP rider, “King” Kenny Roberts will be making his way around the billowing circuit for all three days on his winning World Championship 1980 Yamaha YZR500

“I’m really looking forward to it,” said Kenny, “as this will be the very first time I’ve ridden at the USGP and my 31-year-old championship-winning YZR is ready to go!”

Look for the kickoff to all the racing action to begin this Friday, July 22 starting at 10:10am Pacific Time and GMT -7

Points in Standings

Pos. Rider Bike Nation Points
1 Casey STONER Honda AUS 168
2 Jorge LORENZO Yamaha SPA 153
3 Andrea DOVIZIOSO Honda ITA 132
4 Valentino ROSSI Ducati ITA 98
5 Dani PEDROSA Honda SPA 94
6 Ben SPIES Yamaha USA 85
7 Nicky HAYDEN Ducati USA 85
8 Marco SIMONCELLI Honda ITA 60
9 Colin EDWARDS Yamaha USA 59
10 Hiroshi AOYAMA Honda JPN 57
11 Hector BARBERA Ducati SPA 49
12 Karel ABRAHAM Ducati CZE 41
13 Alvaro BAUTISTA Suzuki SPA 39
14 Toni ELIAS Honda SPA 35
15 Cal CRUTCHLOW Yamaha GBR 34
16 Loris CAPIROSSI Ducati ITA 22
17 Randy DE PUNIET Ducati FRA 15
18 John HOPKINS Suzuki USA 6
19 Kousuke AKIYOSHI Honda JPN 3
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July 21, 2011 - Posted by | Andrea Dovizioso, Assen, Ben Spies, Casey Stoner, Dani Pedrosa, Ducati, girlracer, Jorge Lorenzo, Laguna Seca, Loris Capirossi, marco simoncelli, MotoGP, motorcycle racing, Nicky Hayden, Red Bull, toni elais, Valentino Rossi

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