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Gibernau recognises team effort

Gibernau recognises team effort

Gibernau recognises team effort

Sete Gibernau described his race as ‘incredible', after sealing victory with an authoritative win in the dry conditions at Le Mans to follow up a dominant wet victory at Jerez. Gibernau's home triumph, his fourth in rainy conditions out of six wins in total had many people writing him off as simply a wet specialist but Gibernau once again demonstrated that at this moment in time, he is the in-form rider in the MotoGP World Championship, and not just in the damp.

"This is incredible. We have done some fantastic work and I must thank my entire team – if I win it is because I have the best team in the world. The help of Honda and Michelin has been unbelievable in what is such a difficult and demanding season. I raced with a temperature of 38 degrees and at the end it was very hard for me, although I don't want to say this really held me back. In the first few laps I realised we had not chosen the ideal tyre; I followed Carlos (Checa), studied what he was doing and was able to get past him after using all the information I had gathered. I maintained a good rhythm and, with a lot of concentration, was able to win.

Gibernau took his second victory of the year in Le Mans and his fourth consecutive podium finish in MotoGP, his third of the season. In Welkom the Barcelona-based rider was third, picking up valuable points for the championship, although he was unable to get involved in the memorable battle between Rossi and Biaggi.

In Jerez he proved once more that he is the master of the wet conditions. Where others tread carefully and with trepidation, Gibernau demonstrates sublime control of the motorcycle and seems to rise to the challenges the water throws up, with an almost natural ease. With these skills, the Spaniard dominated the Gran Premio Marlboro de España in front of a delighted home crowd and took over the World Championship lead for the first time in his long Grand Prix career.

In Le Mans Sete was out to show that the MotoGP World Championship hadn't just become an Italian affair between Rossi and Biaggi, but knew also that any chances he had for victory would be compromised by the fever he was suffering from. When he went out on track his temperature was at 38ºC and he had a sore throat he had complained of since the first day in France. Nonetheless, with the help of the mobile clinic, he overcame his physical issues, and showed again his strength on the track. He won the race authoritatively, a second and a half ahead of Checa, 1.9 seconds off Biaggi and over four back to Rossi.

Gibernau has splendidly overcome the first hurdle in his bid to keep hold of the championship lead. He is now top with 66 points, 10 more than second places Max Biaggi, who has 56, and fifteen more than reigning MotoGP Champion Valentino Rossi in third. Rossi has 51 points currently, and knows now that Gibernau is the man to beat. In turn, the Spaniard himself declares that he isn't about to take a dip in form.

"The best thing about this start to the season is that even though we have not been at our best we have won two races and we got on the podium in the other one. I feel strong, but I know that I can still give more. The best from me and the bike is still to come, but from this race I know what our strong points are and what we must improve on".


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