Spies takes first MotoGP victory at Assen
25 June 2011 – Ben Spies grabbed his maiden MotoGP win in the Dutch TT this afternoon, taking advantage of a first lap collision between factory Yamaha team-mate Jorge Lorenzo and Gresini’s Marco Simoncelli. The pair were able to continue, but Spies was in dominant form and showed no signs of letting his lead slip throughout the rest of the race, crossing the line ahead of Repsol Honda’s Casey Stoner and Andrea Dovizioso.
As the race got underway Simoncelli lost his lead, with Lorenzo and Spies making slightly better starts. Battle ensued for position during the first few corners, before Lorenzo ran wide at Turn 4 and left a gap on the inside. Simoncelli wasted no time in attempting to pass, but lost control of his bike and slid into the path of Lorenzo, seeing them both drop considerably down the order.
The race saw its only two retirements soon after, as Randy de Puniet and Karl Abraham fell from their bikes. Both were unharmed, but had no other option but to watch the rest of the action from the sidelines. Spies settled into an rhythm early on, doing his best to pull away from the fighting Repsol Honda’s of Andrea Dovizioso and Casey Stoner.
Despite his best efforts, Dovizioso failed to hold Stoner at bay, losing the position to his team-mate and having to make do with cementing his place on the final step of the podium. Stoner initially looked like a threat to leader Spies, but ultimately failed to reel him in and crossed the line some seven seconds behind the American rider.
Valentino Rossi finished a promising fourth behind fellow Italian Dovizioso, albeit over half a minute adrift of winner Spies. The seven-time Champion held off Ducati team-mate Nicky Hayden at the chequered flag, while Jorge Lorenzo grabbed sixth place after an excellent recovery from the back of the field.
Colin Edwards was the sole Tech 3 rider inside the top ten after team-mate Cal Crutchlow suffered from technical issues early in the race, crossing the line just ahead of stand-in Repsol Honda rider Hiroshi Aoyama. Simoncelli progressed back up to ninth after his early dramas, beating Spaniard Toni Elias who completed the top ten.
- Post-race feelings from winner Ben Spies
Round 8 of the championship will be staged at Mugello next weekend