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Catalunya 2007 - Stoner comes out on top after superb race

Catalunya 2007 - Stoner comes out on top after superb race

More than 110,000 fans looked on at the Circuit de Catalunya last June, as Casey Stoner took his fourth victory of the 2007 season following an epic battle with Valentino Rossi and Dani Pedrosa.

Casey Stoner secured the fourth of his ten 2007 wins in last year´s Gran Premi Cinzano de Catalunya, on a hot, sunny June afternoon at the Barcelona track, after an immense battle with Fiat Yamaha´s Valentino Rossi - with local hero Dani Pedrosa finishing a close third.

The young Ducati Marlboro rider produced one of the best performances of his career, closely contesting the race lead with five-time premier class World Champion Rossi in an enthralling duel - the Australian eventually crossing the line just 0.069s ahead of the Italian.

MotoGP´s pole jinx sequence extended to nine races as Rossi was unable to take advantage of starting at the front of the grid, having seen Catalan Repsol Honda rider Pedrosa delight the crowd at the first corner to take the hole shot.

Pedrosa had not won a Grand Prix for nearly a year at the time, but he was finding form and was ready to pounce in the event of any errors from the leading pair – ultimately finishing just 0.390s behind Stoner, who increased his World Championship lead to 14 points.

There was another decent points haul for Rizla Suzuki´s John Hopkins who repeated his 2006 fourth place from Catalunya, while a brave ride from Kawasaki´s injured Randy de Puniet saw him secure his then best ever MotoGP result in fifth as the top five comprised riders representing five different constructors.

There was disappointment for the Catalan supporters who had hoped to see home rider Toni Elias challenging for the podium as the 24 year-old Honda Gresini man retired due to engine failure when in sixth place with ten laps to go.

An excellent ride from Stoner´s Ducati colleague Loris Capirossi saw him exorcise the demons after his 2006 crash at the same venue, as the Italian came from 17th on the grid to finish in sixth place.

Suzuki´s Chris Vermeulen, Pramac d´Antin´s Alex Barros, Honda Gresini´s Marco Melandri and Fiat Yamaha´s Colin Edwards completed the top ten - whilst World Champion Nicky Hayden was frustrated to have crossed the line 11th after qualifying seventh.


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