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Donington 2005: Rossi puts on rain-soaked masterclass

Donington 2005: Rossi puts on rain-soaked masterclass

Donington 2005: Rossi puts on rain-soaked masterclass

Valentino Rossi came through one of the most accident-strewn races in MotoGP history to seal his seventh win of the season in last year's British Grand Prix at Donington Park. With torrential rain throughout the day leaving several centimetres of standing water on the track, Rossi was one of only ten riders to stay on two wheels throughout the race although he had to avoid several scares before eventually shaking the attentions of Kenny Roberts and Alex Barros with a breathtaking surge to victory seven laps from the end.

Second place for Roberts represented a first podium for the former World Champion and his Suzuki team since Rio in 2002, whilst Honda's Alex Barros was able to celebrate his 250th Grand Prix appearance in style by joining the rostrum in third place. Biaggi, Gibernau and Melandri all fell victim to the treacherous weather conditions, with Biaggi the first rider to crash out at the end of the opening lap. Melandri soon followed, crashing at the same point as his compatriot on the exit of Goddards corner and taking Troy Bayliss with him into the dirt, whilst Gibernau, who was leading the race, went down on lap four. John Hopkins briefly led on the Suzuki before gradually losing positions and then himself sliding out of fifth place at the chicane, returning to the track to take eleventh.

By that time local favourite Shane Byrne was already dreaming about what might have been after delighting the 75,661 home crowd with a charge to sixth place on the Proton KR-KTM machine before also crashing out, following Ruben Xaus, Nicky Hayden, Shinya Nakano, James Ellison and Franco Battaini back to the pits. Carlos Checa and Loris Capirossi produced a late charge to close the gap to Edwards but were forced to accept fifth and sixth place respectively ahead of Makoto Tamada, Alex Hofmann, Toni Elias, Roberto Rolfo and Hopkins – the only eleven riders to finish the race.

MotoGP, 2006, GAS BRITISH GRAND PRIX, Valentino Rossi

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