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MotoGP Returns to Europe for Brno
Fresh from an impressive ride at the Indianapolis Grand Prix last weekend that delivered a double podium, the Movistar Yamaha MotoGP team head to Brno this weekend for Sunday's Grand Prix of the Czech Republic.
Valentino Rossi arrives in Brno in confident mood after a strong performance in Indianapolis that saw him leading the race in the early laps and ultimately taking a third place podium finish. The Italian nine-time world champion has a stunning record in Brno, claiming a 125cc race win in 1996, a 250cc win in 1999 and one 500cc victory in 2001. In the modern MotoGP era Rossi also counts premier class Brno victories in 2003, 2005, 2008 and 2009.
Jorge Lorenzo arrives in Brno with his confidence and fitness both back at peak levels. His performance in Indianapolis firmly re-established the four-time world champion as a key protagonist with a second place finish on the podium. Lorenzo also has a strong record at Brno, claiming one 125cc victory in 2004, two 250cc victories in 2006 and 2007 and a maiden GP win in 2010. Lorenzo missed out on victory by just 0.178 seconds after a stunning duel with Dani Pedrosa in 2012 and continued his Czech podium run with third place last year.
Championship Standings: 3rd / 157 points
"I really like the Brno circuit. In the past I really did good races although in the last couple of years I've not had a great performance there. In Czech Republic we will have to repeat what we did in Indianapolis; concentrate, study corner by corner in every practice and do the maximum to fight with Marc and Jorge. It would be great to return to the podium there."
Championship Standings: 4th / 117 points
"I think Brno could be good for us like in Mugello or Montmeló. It will be difficult because Marc is pretty constant in all the tracks. We have improved a lot from Barcelona and we found some little things that permit us to be more constant and competitive as well. Physically I feel already in a good shape and I can keep a good pace during the race. Maybe in Brno with this bike we can fight for the win but to be more competitive in all the tracks we need more efforts to get some more tenths. Anyway I'm happy after the race at Indy and we will keep fighting until the end."
Massimo Meregalli - Movistar Yamaha MotoGP Team Director
"We are all excited to be back in Europe after a great performance in Indianapolis. Both Vale and Jorge are in very competitive shape and we know that Brno is a track that can suit us pretty well so we want to get to Friday and begin to work as soon as possible."
Espargaro and Smith ready to surge high in Brno
Monster Yamaha Tech3 riders Pol Espargaro and Bradley Smith will this week contest the 11th round of the 2014 MotoGP World Championship at the picturesque Brno circuit as the paddock returns to Europe. The race action will resume instantly from the previous round with the MotoGP ensemble heading straight to the bwin Grand Prix České Republiky, where both riders fully intend to continue their positive starts to the second half of the season.
The Czech Republic round is firm fan and rider favourite with its roots in motorcycle racing stretching back as far as the 1930's where events took place on the public roads in the surrounding area before the Automotodrom Brno's construction in 1987. The undulating, fast flowing track is built in a natural amphitheatre and the asphalt flicks between six left corners and eight right with various changes in elevation at the impressive 5403 meter circuit.
Pol Espargaro will once again be aiming to battle the factory MotoGP bikes, after finishing as the leading satellite bike for the second time this year with a fifth placed finish at Indianapolis, as well as inching towards the elusive debut podium. Britain's Bradley Smith, who heroically brought his Yamaha YZR-M1 home in sixth despite a finger injury which was sustained in the qualifying practice in America, will be aiming to build upon his result and go one higher to challenge inside the top five in Sunday's 22 lap sprint.
Championship Standings: 6th / 78 points
"The first thing I must say is that it was good to finish Indy with a strong result after the summer break. I am feeling more confident every time I run with the Yamaha YZR-M1 and for round 11 in the Czech Republic I intend to step it up further. The Brno circuit is great fun to ride especially with the hills and flowing corners, so for me I am very excited to see what the Yamaha and I can do here this weekend with my results at Brno being good in the past, including qualifying on the front row here last year in Moto2. At beyond the mid point of this season I am still learning. Although I'm enjoying myself a lot, for sure it will be a long race weekend where we will have to work hard to get everything set up for a strong qualifying on Saturday then the Grand Prix on Sunday, but I can't wait to get going and ride the hills at Brno!"
Championship Standings: 9th / 58 points
"After a good summer break, it was a decent way to commence the second half of the season with a sixth placed finish in Indy as this is where I need to be. There is no rest this time as we went straight back to Europe for Brno, which I am really fired up for and where I will once again be doing my best to get close to the factory MotoGP bikes. My finger is healing gradually and as always I will be giving my all to get a top result in the Czech Republic with my confidence high. I qualified well last year where I achieved my joint highest qualifying result of my rookie year in sixth and even though the race didn't go to plan, this year I am aiming to continue the good form found at Indianapolis. The fast sweeping corners of Brno should suit the Yamaha YZR-M1's character, so I hope to qualify in the top six and then really go for it on Sunday."
Alex De Angelis alongside Aleix Espargaro at Brno
After the Indianapolis GP, where Colin Edwards announced his retirement from the racing competition, the NGM Forward Racing Team heads straight back to Europe for this weekend's Grand Prix at Brno, one of the most historic venues on the calendar, where racing have been held since the 1930's.
With the Texan rider continuing to be a key figure of the team, 30-year old Alex De Angelis will race alongside Aleix Espargaro on board of a Forward Yamaha starting from Brno. The San Marino rider has already been part of NGM Forward Racing Moto2 team in 2012 and 2013 claiming a win (Sepang 2012) and a podium finish (Sachsenring 2012).
After the unlucky race at Indy, Spaniard Espargaro looks forward to Brno to get a good result and get important points for the championship. Aleix lost the sixth place in the standing for just one point and he aims at recovering this position at Brno.
Championship Standings: 7th / 77 points
"After the zero at Indy, we want to return even stronger at Brno. It was a pity because I lost important points, so now we need to recover. My target is to catch Dovi who is currently fifth in the championship. I like Brno, it's a track with many elevations changes, similar to Mugello. There is a long uphill, so we know that we will suffer a bit. Anyway we will go back on track to get the best possible result."
Alex De Angelis
"I'm excited to start this new adventure with the Forward Racing Team on board of the Forward Yamaha. It's great to return racing in the premiere class and I'd like to thank the NGM Forward Racing Team for this opportunity. I will try to use at the maximum the free practices to start learning this new machine."
The Ducati Team heads back to Europe for the Czech Republic Grand Prix
After completing the first of three August races in the calendar at Indianapolis, the Ducati Team has now returned to Europe, and the Czech Republic, for the eleventh round of the MotoGP World Championship this weekend at the Automotodrom Brno.
The circuit, which was built in the mid-80s, offers a fantastic spectacle for teams, riders and fans alike, with the main features being a succession of variable-radius corners together with numerous steep uphill and downhill sections. Fast and flowing with plenty of room for different lines, the Brno circuit is one of the most popular tracks on the calendar for riders.
Both Ducati Team men have been on the podium once in the premier MotoGP category in the Czech Republic race: Andrea Dovizioso finished runner-up in 2011, and his team-mate Cal Crutchlow third in 2012. Last year Crutchlow also set his second-ever MotoGP pole position at this circuit.
For the fifth time this season, the Brno race will see the participation of Michele Pirro, who will be out on track again with the Ducati Test Team's GP14.
Andrea Dovizioso (Ducati Team #04)
"Brno is a nice, difficult track and totally different from Indianapolis. I like its up-and-down layout, even though it's not one of my favorite circuits. The track itself has got a lot of straights, and my Desmosedici GP14 is certainly not lacking in power after the debut of the new engine at Indianapolis, so I'm feeling confident that we can again be closer to the others, like we were at Indy."
Cal Crutchlow (Ducati Team #35)
"I'm looking forward to going back to Brno, which is one of my favourite circuits, and I'll be aiming to get a good result there. The track seems more suitable for the Ducati, because there are a lot of hard acceleration areas where I think we can gain some time, and the GP14 is also strong in the braking zone, even though we still need to still improve the cornering. My guys are working very hard for me and I look forward to working with them again in Brno."
Michele Pirro (Ducati Test Team #51)
"I am very happy to return to the track to take part in a grand prix race. I have been training hard and I hope to be able to help the engineers to gather data on this track, but at the same time I want to try and get as close as possible to the factory riders. The Brno circuit is not one of my favourites, but I am convinced that in any case I can get a good result."
The Automotodrom Brno
Until 1982, races at Brno took place on a street circuit on the outskirts of the city but a new permanent track was built in the mid-1980s and the Czech Republic Grand Prix returned to the calendar in 1987 after a gap of several years. Hugely popular with riders and fans, the circuit is situated in the hilly forests around Brno, which offer a fantastic view of the action from trackside.
oyama targets more points at Brno
DRIVE M7 Aspar aiming to keep up consistent run that has seen him take points from nine of the ten races so far
The MotoGP World Championship heads from suburban Indianapolis to the forests of the Czech Republic this weekend as the Brno Circuit plays host to the eleventh round of the season. The MotoGP riders will need to make use of the energy they have saved up over the summer break to tackle a second Grand Prix in as many weekends on opposite sides of the Atlantic, especially if they want to halt the historic victory march of Marc Márquez - unbeaten in ten races and on course to double the points tally of his closest championship rival Dani Pedrosa.
Hiroshi Aoyama came through a difficult weekend at Indianapolis to score an outstanding top ten finish on Sunday, a result that provides a welcome boost to the DRIVE M7 Aspar rider at an important stage of the season. The Japanese rider is now fourteenth in the championship on 34 points and one of the most consistent points-scorers, having done so in nine of the ten races so far - a statistic he is aiming to add to this weekend. Leon Camier didn't manage to score points on his MotoGP debut as a replacement for the injured Nicky Hayden but if he continues to progress in the way he did last weekend then a top fifteen finish is not out of reach at Brno. The British rider showed a rapid adaptation to the Honda and he is looking forward to building on it at a circuit he knows.
Hiroshi Aoyama: "The tenth place finish at Indianapolis gives us great motivation for the second half of the championship. It is really important that we came back strongly after the summer break but we still have a lot of work in front of us. We need to find some more mid-corner speed this weekend and some more confidence on the front. Hopefully at Brno we can get through practice without the setbacks we had last weekend. We will try to be strong from Friday and work from a good plan that will see us competitive right through the weekend."
Leon Camier: "Even though I didn't manage to finish my debut MotoGP race at Indianapolis I learnt a lot of things - mainly in terms of the direction we need to go with the chassis set-up and what I need to do to ride this bike fast. Hopefully at Brno we can continue working in the same way. I felt more comfortable with every passing lap of Sunday's race and understood what I needed to do to improve my pace, so I think that will be an important step for us going into this weekend at a circuit I know well."
Fresh from Indianapolis the Repsol Honda Team arrive in the Czech Republic
With no rest, Repsol Honda's Marc Marquez and Dani Pedrosa have arrived in the Czech Republic in anticipation of this weekend's Brno GP.
A popular circuit with both the riders and fans, Brno is built in a natural bowl which has many elevation changes as the circuit navigates itself through the beautiful wooded scenery offering the spectators spectacular places to view. Marc and Dani were testing here in July - before the Summer break - and they'll be hoping this will give them an advantage in terms of setting up the bike.
Both riders have enjoyed good results here in the past with Marc winning here last year (MotoGP) and also in 2012 (Moto2). Dani's stand-out race here is from 2012 when he had a memorable battle with Lorenzo, claiming his first win at the Czech circuit in the MotoGP class where he's also won in 250cc (2005) and in 125cc (2003).
Championship Standing: 1st - 250 points
"We've not really stopped! After the race on Sunday we had a nice dinner with the team and then yesterday we were travelling all day to Europe. Brno isn't one of my favourite tracks but I've had quite good results there in the past. We were testing here a month ago and even if the grip was very low at the time, I hope some of the data we collected will be a help! Everyone knows that historically Yamaha are strong here so we'll have to work hard from Friday to give ourselves the best chance on Sunday!"
Championship Standing: 2nd - 161 points
"Brno is a track that I really enjoy, I usually do well there. I am really looking forward to get there and get back the feeling with the bike since Indianapolis did not go too well. I am hoping to be able to take full advantage of the good feeling we had while testing there before the Summer break and the setting we found then will help us push to get good results"