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Melandri takes a superb podium place

Melandri takes a superb podium place

Melandri takes a superb podium place

Fortuna Honda rider Marco Melandri, just two weeks after his horrendous crash in Catalunya, put in a courageous and determined performance at Donington to finish third at the British GP following a spectacular battle with Valentino Rossi.

Sitting third on the grid, Melandri made a superb start to take the early lead and set a hot pace. The Italian was stalked by Dani Pedrosa and the two soon opened a gap on the rest of the field. Despite still suffering pain from his injuries, Melandri's supreme fitness allowed him to maintain his challenge for a place on the podium, although he fell behind Pedrosa as the race progressed with the young Spaniard opening a healthy lead at the front.

With just a few laps remaining, Valentino Rossi - who had climbed his way through the field in tremendous fashion - caught up with Melandri and, after a memorable battle, got the better of his compatriot to sneak second place.

Marco Melandri
"Today was an incredible day! Bearing in mind my physical condition two weeks ago, I have to be very satisfied. I want to thank the Clinica Mobile for the work they did to allow me to race here in good shape. After the first few laps I could feel that my strength was going, but I made a big effort to maintain my pace. The first part of circuit was harder for me to negotiate, but as the race went on I improved on that part and the bike worked perfectly. It's a shame I lost second because of a small error on the penultimate corner, but the battle with Valentino was great and I think the fans really enjoyed the spectacle."

MotoGP, 2006, GAS BRITISH GRAND PRIX, Marco Melandri

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