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Stats ahead of Estoril MotoGP round

Wed, 27 Apr 2011 00:00:00 -0700

The MotoGP circus moves into it's tenth appearance at the Estoril circuit, with the Portugease circuit playing host to a Grand Prix event in each of the previous nine years since the introduction of the four-stroke MotoGP formula at in 2002.

Below is a reminder of the highlights of the previous nine MotoGP races held at Estoril:

2002 – Having won the last 500cc GP race at Estoril in 2001, Valentino Rossi (Honda) won the first of the MotoGP races held at the circuit. This was a race that was run in very wet conditions and Sete Gibernau had led for most of the race only to crash out with four laps to go.

2003 – Valentino Rossi (Honda) won in the premier-class for the third successive year at Estoril, this time from great rival Max Biaggi with Loris Capirossi making it an all-Italian podium.

2004 – Valentino Rossi continued his run of successive wins at Estoril – this time riding a Yamaha.

2005 – Alex Barros (Honda) dominated proceedings by winning the race from pole position and setting the fastest lap as well as being fastest in every practice session. This was the last time that Barros stood on the top step of the podium in Grand Prix racing.

2006 – After qualifying down in 11th place on the grid, Toni Elias scored his only MotoGP victory by just 0.002 seconds from Valentino Rossi, to equal the closest ever recorded finish in the premier-class since the introduction of electronic timing. This is the last time that a Honda rider won the MotoGP race at Estoril and it was also the last time that a rider from a satellite team has won a MotoGP race.

This race was also memorable for the crash of Dani Pedrosa, which also took team-mate Nicky Hayden out of the race, who consequently lost the lead in the world championship standings.

2007 – Valentino Rossi (Yamaha) won for the fifth time at Estoril, after a great battle with Dani Pedrosa.

2008 – Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha) qualified on pole and took his first MotoGP victory, in only his third race in the premier-class.

2009 – Jorge Lorenzo repeated the performance of the previous year – winning the race from pole position. Casey Stoner finished second on his return to racing after a three race break due to illness. This second place finish by Stoner is the best ever finish by a Ducati rider at Estoril.

2010 – For the third year in succession, Jorge Lorenzo won at Estoril from pole position, this time by a comfortable eight second margin from team-mate Valentino Rossi. Due to the extreme wet weather the qualifying session was abandoned and the grid positions for the race were taken from the results of the free practice sessions.

Grand Prix racing numbers

150 – At the Portuguese Grand Prix, Mika Kallio will be making his 150th Grand Prix start; the first Finnish rider ever to reach this milestone.

90 – Dani Pedrosa’s second place finish at Jerez was the 90th time he has stood on the podium in Grand Prix racing. He is only the tenth rider to reach this milestone in the 63-year history of the world championship series.

50% - With his victory at the Spanish Grand Prix, Jorge Lorenzo has now won ten of the twenty MotoGP races since the start of 2010. The other winners in this period are: four wins each for Casey Stoner and Dani Pedrosa and two wins for Valentino Rossi.

49 – At Jerez, Dani Pedrosa finished on the podium for the 49th time in the MotoGP class. His next top three finish will make him just the 11th rider to reach the milestone of 50 podium finishes in the premier-class.

19.339 secs – Jorge Lorenzo won the MotoGP race at Jerez by 19.339 seconds, which is the largest winning margin in MotoGP since Valentino Rossi won the wet Portuguese Grand Prix in 2002 by 22.2 seconds.

15 – Jorge Lorenzo’s victory in Spain was the 15th time he has stood on the top step of a MotoGP podium. This is the same number of wins in the premier-class as Alex Criville, who was previously the Spanish rider with most premierclass Grand Prix victories.

14 – This is the 14th occasion that there has been a Portuguese Grand Prix. The first two Portuguese Grands Prix were actually held in Spain: the first in 1987 was at the Jarama circuit, with the 1988 event held at Jerez. Following an eleven year break the Portuguese Grand Prix was hosted at Estoril for the first time in 2000, where it has been held every year since.

13th – At the Spanish Grand Prix, Marcel Schrotter finished 13th to give the new Mahindra team their first world championship points.

11- On qualifying day at Estoril it will be exactly eleven years since Kenny Roberts Jr. (Suzuki) won the two-part 500cc Spanish Grand Prix at Jerez in 2000. Third in this race was Valentino Rossi – his first podium finish in the premier-class in only his fourth GP start on a 500cc machine.

6 – Six of the point scoring riders in the 125cc race at Jerez scored their best ever Grand Prix result: Johann Zarco, Danny Kent, Taylor Mackenzie, Hiroki Ono, Zulfahmi Khairuddin and Josep Rodriguez.

5 – In the MotoGP class, Yamaha are the most successful manufacturer at Estoril with five victories. The other four MotoGP races at Estoril have all been won by Honda riders. Estoril is the only circuit at which Yamaha have had four successive victories since the introduction of the 800cc formula in MotoGP.

5 - Valentino Rossi is the rider with most victories at Estoril, having won the premier-class race on five occasions. The next most successful are Toni Elias, Alvaro Bautista and Jorge Lorenzo who have each had three wins at Estoril.

5 – Estoril is one of just five current circuits at which Casey Stoner did not win during his time in the Ducati factory team; the others were Jerez, Le Mans, Silverstone and Indianapolis.

4 – Hiroshi Aoyama’s fourth place finish in Jerez is the best result in the MotoGP class by a Japanese rider since Shinya Nakano finished fourth at the Czech GP in 2008.

4 - Estoril is one of just four circuits on this year’s calendar where Ducati have not had a MotoGP win. The others are Indianapolis, Le Mans and Silverstone.

4 – In the MotoGP race at Jerez, Ducati had four riders finish in the top seven for the first time ever in the premier-class of Grand Prix racing.

2 – Bradley Smith finished fourth in the Moto2 race in Spain, with fellow British rider Kev Coghlan finishing eighth. The last time that two British riders had finished in the top eight in the intermediate-class of Grand Prix racing was Italian GP in 1999 when Jeremy McWilliams was fourth and Jason Vincent was seventh.


By Robin Goodwin


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