World Motorsport Round-up: 7th April 2013

MotoGP (Round 1/18, Losail, Qatar)

Jorge Lorenzo began his MotoGP title defence in the best possible way by taking a dominant win in the opening round of the season in Qatar.

Lorenzo led from pole into the first corner and never looked back, gradually pulling away throughout the race to win by nearly six seconds.

If the nature of Lorenzo’s win of quiet, for teammate Valentino Rossi it was anything but. After two years struggling on a Ducati, the nine-time world champion produced an inspired ride at the Losail circuit to finish second.

A mistake at the beginning of the second lap when attempting to pass Dani Pedrosa dropped Rossi back to seventh, but the Italian’s recovery had fans reminiscing about the old days as he first dispatched of Andrea Dovizioso and Stefan Bradl to climb up to fifth before closing in on a three bike train that included Pedrosa, Marc Marquez and Cal Crutchlow.

Despite only catching them with a few laps remaining, and having a huge disadvantage to the Hondas of Pedrosa and Marquez on Qatar’s long pit straight, Rossi pulled off a series of stunning manoeuvres to move himself up to second, outwitting the two Hondas in the infield to gain positions.

Third place ultimately went to Marquez, who on his MotoGP debut rode a highly impressive race to beat his more experienced teammate Pedrosa. The Moto2 champion has been highly touted for big things in the premier class, and the Spaniard lived up to his expectations under the Qatar lights. He will certainly be one to watch this season.

Pedrosa finished fourth behind his teammate, while Crutchlow coasted home fifth after going off at turn one when Rossi passed him with a few laps left.

Alvaro Bautista and the factory Hondas of Dovizioso and Hayden finished sixth, seventh and eighth, while Andrea Iannone and Ben Spies rounded out the top ten.

1) Jorge Lorenzo (Esp) Yamaha – 22 laps
2) Valentino Rossi (Ita) Yamaha – + 5.990 secs
3) Marc Marquez (Esp) Honda – + 6.201 secs
4) Dani Pedrosa (Esp) Honda – + 9.473 secs
5) Cal Crutchlow (GB) Yamaha – + 18.764 secs
6) Alvaro Bautista (Esp) Honda – + 22.148 secs
7) Andrea Dovizioso (Ita) Ducati – + 24.355 secs
8) Nicky Hayden (USA) Ducati – + 24.920 secs
9) Andrea Iannone (Ita) Ducati – + 27.124 secs
10) Ben Spies (USA) Ducati – + 44.908 secs

Championship Standings
1) Jorge Lorenzo (Esp) Yamaha – 25 points
2) Valentino Rossi (Ita) Yamaha – 20 points
3) Marc Marquez (Esp) Honda – 16 points
4) Dani Pedrosa (Esp) Honda – 13 points
5) Cal Crutchlow (GB) Yamaha – 11 points
Click here for the full results and championship standings from the 2013 MotoGP season

World Series by Renault (Round 1/9, Monza, Italy)

Race one

Stoffel Vandoorne marked his World Series by Renault debut in style by taking a dominant win from pole in race one.

The young Belgian led throughout to take the win by almost seven seconds.

Antonio Felix da Costa had looked like he might challenge, but a puncture when attempting to reel in Vandoorne forced him into retirement.

Kevin Magnussen finished second ahead of Christopher Zanella, while Oli Webb and Nigel Melker rounded out the top five.

Race two

da Costa bounced back from his retirement in race one in the best way possible by winning the second race of the weekend.

In a superb battle at the front, da Costa lost the lead to Vandoorne at the start, but fought back in the best way possible by re-taking the race one winner into the Rettifillo chicane on lap two.

Vandoorne then lost a place to Magnussen by skipping the chicane, who then swooped on da Costa at the Parabolica to move into first place.

For the Dane however, that lead was to last for less than 20 seconds as da Costa took revenge on his rival and retook first place at the Rettifillo.

Magnussen continued to apply pressure to da Costa for the remainder of the race, but was unable to take the lead again and he was forced to back off in the closing laps when his sidepod broke.

da Costa duly opened his account for the season, followed by Magnussen and Vandoorne, while Arthur Pic, Nico Muller and Norman Nato completed the top six.

The results from the weekend mean Vandoorne leaves Monza as the early-season leader, four points ahead of Magnussen, with pre-season title favourite da Costa 11 points further back in third.

Race One Results
1) Stoffel Vandoorne (Bel) Fortec Motorsports – 29 laps
2) Kevin Magnussen (Den) DAMS – +7.053 secs
3) Christopher Zanella (Sui) ISR – +8.596 secs
4) Oli Webb (GB) Fortec Motorsports – +8.991 secs
5) Nigel Melker (Ned) Tech 1 Racing – +16.491 secs

Race Two Results
1) Antonio Felix da Costa (Por) Arden Caterham – 29 laps
2) Kevin Magnussen (Den) DAMS – +2.767 secs
3) Stoffel Vandoorne (Bel) Fortec – +5.922 secs
4) Arthur Pic (Fra) AV Formula – +11.600 secs
5) Nico Muller (Sui) Draco – 16.805 secs

Championship Standings
1) Stoffel Vandoorne (Bel) Fortec – 40pts
2) Kevin Magnussen (Den) DAMS – 36pts
3) Antonio Felix da Costa (Por) Arden Caterham – 25pts
4) Arthur Pic (Fra) AV Formula – 20pts
5) Christopher Zanella (Sui) ISR – 16pts

Click here for the full results and championship standings from the 2013 World Series by Renault season.

World Touring Car Championship (Round 2/13, Marrakech, Morocco)

It was a weekend of firsts in the WTCC, as Michael Nykjaer and Pepe Oriola both scored their maiden wins in Marrakech.

Nykjaer won Sunday’s first race, ahead of Gabriele Tarquini, James Nash, Yvan Muller and reigning champion Rob Huff, while Oriola took the chequered flag in race two, followed by Muller, Tom Chilton, Nash and Marc Basseng.

Click here for the full results and championship standings from the 2013 World Touring Car Championship.

Stephen D’Albiac


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