DANI PEDROSA (1st – Repsol Honda): “It was a hard race because the pace was very fast from the beginning. I tried to understand the bike, as yesterday we had a lot of chatter so I didn’t know how it would be today. In the beginning it wasn’t too bad but then it got a little worse during the race. I managed it as best I could and I stayed with Jorge, I was able to get a better line out of the corner and pass him and then I put in some good laps and controlled the gap. Jorge tried to stay with me, but then decided to settle for the second place. We did what we needed to do and it’s just a pity that there is no one else who can stay with us because every race I win, he’s been second. But anyway, it’s a great feeling to win races and we are doing it now. Thanks to Honda and the whole team, I’m really happy to win again here in Motegi!”.
JORGE LORENZO (2nd – Yamaha Factory Racing): “I was completely at the maximum trying to stay with Dani but today we had such different performance on the straights and he was also riding really well. I tried to stay with him but it was impossible, maybe next time it will be different. For sure the Championship is closer now, but we are still very competitive and have the chance to win”.
ÁLVARO BAUTISTA (3rd – San Carlo Honda Gresini): “It was a great weekend, also signing the contract for next season with Gresini Racing. I knew I could fight for the podium because yesterday [Saturday] we proved we had a good race pace – so I tried and succeeded. I didn’t start very well and I lost some positions, but I recovered quickly. Later, when I caught up with Crutchlow, I saw that we were the same speed and I tried to keep a safe distance not to overheat the brakes. With five laps left I pushed more and I attacked. It was a good fight and I had fun. I’m very happy for my team mechanics, who have worked hard together with Showa to give me a competitive bike, also by sponsors and HRC, which is giving me all the necessary support. I hope to continue this in the coming races”.
ANDREA DOVIZIOSO (4th – Monster Yamaha Tech 3): “It’s hard to be satisfied with this fourth place and there is a few reasons why. First of all I was not as fast as I believe I should be. It was actually a strange weekend because of the problems with the brakes. This track is so hard for braking that we worked a lot and tried many things to solve that problem. But at the beginning of the race the brakes did not work properly and I did not understand why and I had to keep some margin in the corners, as I could not stop as I normally do. After a few laps it started to get better and I could push more and more but I had already lost a lot of time. I did not ride as smooth as I wanted as well, so I could not catch up to Álvaro and Cal. It’s a pity because I expected more from this weekend, so I suppose fourth is not so bad. Now I’m loo king forward to going to Sepang next week where I am confident I will be battling for the podium again”.
CASEY STONER (5th – Repsol Honda): “I’m a little disappointed to be honest. We slowly improved over the weekend and got the bike to a point we were pretty happy with in warm up. At the start of the race I felt had the pace to stay with Dani and Jorge and the bike was feeling pretty good. Then as the race progressed my body started to suffer and ache in ways I didn’t expect. We had the pace to run a lot higher and be on the podium but unfortunately I couldn’t manage it physically today. A big thanks to my team, they gave me a fantastic bike today but I couldn’t do anymore in my condition”.
STEFAN BRADL (6th – LCR Honda): “We had a little problem with my arm today and I was not really able to steer the bike and after 10 laps I was struggling a lot and I have never had such a big problem with the arm pump. At the beginning I could easily follow the group in the front of me with Stoner and Dovizioso but the problem with my breaking hand got worse and worse lap by lap and I could not go any faster. I had to slow down and managed to finish the race 6th. It’s a bit frustrating and this was surely not a perfect weekend for us but I aim to bounce back in Malaysia next weekend”.
VALENTINO ROSSI (7th – Ducati Team): “I think we did the best that we could over the whole weekend. We worked well on the bike, and I had a good setting for the race today. Unfortunately, this is our potential at the moment, and our pace still isn’t at the same level as the others, especially in the early laps. Today I rode at the maximum for the whole race, I tried to catch Bradl, and I got closer near the end. I think we’ve found consistency since we’ve had the new frame and swingarm, but there’s still work to do. We still lose a lot on acceleration, where we’re not able to put all the horsepower to the ground because the tyre spins too much, especially exiting the slower corners. Anyway, we’ll try our best until the end and see how it goes”.
NICKY HAYDEN (8th – Ducati Team): “It wasn’t a great race for me. We were a little bit behind all weekend, but then this morning we thought we had made up some ground. In the race, though, I was having troubles getting the bike stopped, especially in the early laps. I lacked front feeling and was running wide, and although that improved as the race went on, I also had problems with vibration from the rear and didn’t have a very good pace. Normally our bike is really good in straight-line braking, so it’s a shame Vale and I struggled here, but anyway, it’s good to finish a race and have something to build on. Thanks to the team for their work and to my physiotherapist, Freddie Dente, for helping me to manage the race with a fracture in my wrist. We’ll try to regroup and look forward to Sepang”.
HÉCTOR BARBERÁ (10th – Pramac Racing Team): “I finished the race, taking home important points for the World ranking. Today’s goal was to achieve the top ten and I got it, even if with a bit of luck. Obviously this is not where I want to be, but I look forward to Sepang and I will try my best until the end, seeing how it goes”.
KAREL ABRAHAM (11th – Cardion AB Motoracing): “The start went surprisingly well, but I was exasperated by what followed. Once again, I had problems with the brakes – they became progressively worse, and whenever I broke hard, the brake lever was virtually touching the handlebars. The first four laps were a disaster, after which things started to improve. Unfortunately Barbera had got away from me, and despite the fact I was starting to close the gap, I ran out of time. A few laps before the finish, it became clear that I wouldn’t be able to catch him and there was no point in taking any risks, so I just protected my position through to the finish line”.
ALEIX ESPARGARÓ (12th – Power Electronics Aspar Team): “In general I am happy with how the weekend went. We were very strong in practice and also in the race, with a great pace. This morning in the warm-up we put in an old engine, because we noticed a strange sound from the new one. When the race began I noticed that the bike wasn’t going fast, but we still managed to put in a good performance. We were the best CRT and are leaders again. I hope that this rollercoaster ride in the standings comes to an end and I can finally place at the top, ahead of Randy. It is a shame for him to have had problems today and I hope that next weekend we can fight alongside one another again”.
COLIN EDWARDS (13th – NGM Mobile Forward Racing): “The race started good and I saw Espargaro was right there I started pushing and felt good, four laps in, I went to put my knee down in the last corner and it nearly ripped me off the bike and I looked down on the straight and I saw I had no knee pad. It just fell off, I don’t remember hitting a curb or anything. Initially I was thinking I had to pull in because I ride like a tripod, put my knee down and let the bike work underneath me. Just thought about the bootcamp, feet up, use your body, be smooth. We had a small issue with electronics during the race but overall the package is getting a little better. Thanks to my team, they’ve done a great job this weekend”.
ROBERTO ROLFO (16th – Speed Master): “This was the first race for this new experience on top of a CRT machine. On one side I’m quite happy, even though the result isn’t exactly what I was hoping for. I wanted to fight more with the other CRTs that were ahead of me. The start worked out well, during the first two laps I was with the CRT group and I tried to keep their pace. I couldn’t deal with braking as I would have liked, even if the bike was improved from yesterday. The bike was working well and most of the problems we had in the practices got sorted out, but that wasn’t enough to battle with the other CRTs in the first laps. I lost touch with the group and I was on my own. When the grip of the rear tyre was less, I was struggling to deal with it in a couple of points in the first and the second turn, so I tried to be as consistent as possible. We put together a lot of informations, which will help us in the next race: Sepang is a track I really like, from which I have great memories and some good references”.
BEN SPIES (Not classified (Yamaha Factory Racing): “I’m incredibly frustrated with today’s result. We’ve known all weekend that the brakes could be an issue due to the tough nature of the track but I did not expect to have trouble on the second lap. The team has worked really hard all weekend and we’ve delivered podium pace with the bike so it’s not the result we deserve. We’ll go to Sepang now and try to put this behind us and hopefully have a trouble-free weekend”.
RANDY DE PUNIET (Not classified – Power Electronics Aspar Team): “This weekend was rather difficult for us. From Friday we had trouble finding our feeling. In qualifying we improved a little and today, in the warmup, we tried some changes that we liked. I had a very strange crash on turn ten. It seemed as though the brake was permanently engaged, even when I had let it go. In the race I had the same issue and fell at the same point. I will look at the reason for this with the team. It definitely hasn’t been the best weekend for us, as I have two hurt ankles from the crash this morning. I hope that in Malaysia we can go back to our positive form”.
CAL CRUTCHLOW (Not classified – Monster Yamaha Tech 3): “All I can do after the way the race finished is take the positives from this weekend and there are a lot. This isn’t a good track for me and I was struggling on Friday, yet I managed to get on the front row of the grid again and for the whole race I was fighting for the podium. The improvements we made from Friday were massive and I am proud of the job that my crew and myself did this weekend. But there is no denying that I am disappointed as well because I was confident I could have passed Álvaro on the last lap. It wouldn’t have been easy because he was riding very well and it was a very enjoyable battle with him. I had a lot of fun and I’m sure he did too and it is just unfortunate that we couldn’t take the fight right to the very end. Even fourth would have been good for my hopes of finishing fifth in the Championship but I lost a lot of points today. We knew fuel consumption was going to be critical. I was very fast and for almost the whole race I was on my own with no slipstream, so I used more fuel. I’ve proven again though that I can fight with the best in the world and now I’m looking forward to Sepang. I had two good tests there earlier this year and I’m excited to go back and try to battle for the top three again”.
DANILO PETRUCCI (Not classified – CAME Iodaracing): “Unfortunately I hade to retire at the last lap while I was doing a good race with good lap times, but it finished the fuel. We did a good job in these days and I’m confident that we could do a good race in Malaysia”.
Sincerely, Eduard Ballús