Dovi keeps his cool to win home Mo­toGP

The Star Early Edition - - MOTORSPORT -

AN­DREA Dovizioso over­came pre-race sick­ness to win his home Ital­ian Grand Prix for Du­cati on Sun­day while Spa­niard Mav­er­ick Vi­nales fin­ished sec­ond on a Yamaha to in­crease his Mo­toGP lead to 26 points.

Dovizioso be­came the fourth dif­fer­ent win­ner in six races and moved up to sec­ond place over­all, ahead of 38-year-old com­pa­triot Valentino Rossi who fin­ished fourth for Yamaha.

Ital­ian Danilo Petrucci came third, af­ter start­ing ninth, on a non­works Du­cati to make it two Ital­ians on the podium at the Mugello cir­cuit in the rolling coun­try­side north of Florence.

“A lot of emo­tion dur­ing the race and be­fore the race my en­ergy wasn’t so good,” said Dovizioso, who had plenty of fans in a crowd mainly cheer­ing for Rossi. “I re­ally wanted this vic­tory and it’s a dream come true for ev­ery Ital­ian rider.”

The vic­tory was his ca­reer third and the first in the top cat­e­gory by an Ital­ian rider on an Ital­ian bike on home soil since Gian­franco Bon­era won the 500cc class on an MV Agusta at Imola in 1974.

Vi­nales now has 105 points to Dovizioso’s 79, with Rossi - who spent a night in hos­pi­tal last week af­ter a crash while rid­ing a mo­tocross bike - on 75.

Honda’s reign­ing cham­pion Marc Mar­quez fin­ished sixth and is fourth over­all with 68 points but team mate Dani Pe­drosa slipped down the or­der af­ter tan­gling with Bri­tain’s Cal Crutchlow and crash­ing out.

Dovizioso was suf­fer­ing from a stom­ach bug be­fore the race and dropped back at the start while Rossi led be­fore Du­cati’s Jorge Lorenzo took over briefly and then Vi­nales hit the front.

With the top four run­ning close to­gether, Vi­nales seemed headed for a fourth win of the sea­son un­til Dovizioso passed on lap 14 and pulled away.

A 69-sec­ond si­lence was held be­fore the race for 2006 Mo­toGP cham­pion Nicky Hay­den, the Amer­i­can who raced with the num­ber 69 and died last month af­ter be­ing hit by a car while train­ing on a bi­cy­cle in eastern Italy.

South Africa’s Brad Bin­der (KTM) im­pressed on his come­back to the Moto2 class af­ter miss­ing three races due to an arm in­jury, and the reign­ing Moto3 cham­pion climbed up to tenth place at the line af­ter qual­i­fy­ing 24th.

Bin­der’s younger brother Dar­ryn was fourth in the Moto3 class and moved up to 12th in the cham­pi­oni­ship.

- Reuters

Do­vi­siozo leads Petrucci, Vi­nales and Rossi. The Du­cati rider went on to record only the third Mo­toGP win of his ca­reer.

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