Simoncelli finishes Australian GP second to World Champion Stoner

Sunday, 16 October 2011

Marco Simoncelli backed up his podium potential at Phillip Island with an excellent second place finish in the Iveco Australian Grand Prix.

Uncertain weather conditions throughout and a heavy shower with just three laps remaining made for a tense finish but Simoncelli managed to overcome the late challenge of Andrea Dovizioso for the second successive race. Twenty points today lifts him to sixth in the championship, just 17 points shy of Ben Spies in fifth. Hiroshi Aoyama had put together a strong charge through the field but fell victim to the inclement conditions in the latter stages of an otherwise positive race.

Marco Simoncelli:
“I am delighted! It was a really tough race with changeable conditions throughout and every time I saw raindrops on my visor I was unsure whether I could push or not. I managed to put a little gap on Dovizioso and Pedrosa but when the rain came Dovizioso was able to catch me and make a pass. I managed to stay with him and follow his lines so when the track was dry again on the last lap I was able to throw everything at him and make the pass. I had been second for the whole race and I didn't want to give up on it until the end. It was nice to finish directly behind the new World Champion. I feel sorry for Lorenzo and I hope he is fit and back on track again soon.”

Hiroshi Aoyama:
“It was a difficult race because of the strong winds and the mixed conditions. I really wanted to have a good race because these are my last few races in MotoGP, but this weekend has been particularly difficult with the crash yesterday and then again today in turn nine when a sudden rain shower hit that part of the track. I am really disappointed and hope to make up for it next week in Malaysia.”

San Carlo Honda Gresini press release.

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