July 22, 2006

Feel that rumble in your chest?: It's MotoGP time in the USA again. Last year was all about defending world champ, the Doctor; American the Texas Tornado; and current world champion points leader, the Kentucky Kid. The 2005 race was especially about the Kentucky Kid as he hit the hole first and never looked back. This year however, changes have been made to Laguna Seca that could take the advantage away from the American riders who are much more familiar with the odd track. Australian Chris Vermeulen will be on the pole for the start of tomorrow's race. But that probably won't last long as he has Colin Edwards right next to him, rookie sensation Dani Pedrosa and Nicky Hayden right behind him, and Marco Melandri and Valentino Rossi not too far behind. So far this season, Rossi has been making it a habit of coming from way behind and earning a podium spot. This race will be on Speed TV tomorrow afternoon, so do yourself a favor and watch it.

posted by NoMich to auto racing at 08:59 PM - 6 comments

Crap, another MotoGP race I wont get to see. Being CCC (cable chanel challanged) I dont get Speed, as well as many other sports related networks. Its time to quit smoking (cigs anyway) and put the money into expanding my cable access. Thanks SportsFilter for improving my health by showing me how much im missing on the telly. will there be a change from Auto Racing to Mortor Sports in the catagories with 2.0?

posted by Folkways at 09:11 AM on July 23

Hopefully dusted can give us a report of what it was like to see the race live and in person.

posted by NoMich at 06:44 PM on July 23

I'm just happy that the Monterey Bay Area is importent in the sports world for once.

posted by whymy at 07:23 PM on July 23

I was there. The last time I went was 1993, and the closest I'd been to a MotoGP bike in 13 years was my TV. First major impression: those fuckers are LOUD. Nothing like the old two-stroke 500s, which were high-pitched screamers... these were more like '68 Chevys running flat out with no mufflers. Much less refined than I expected, with backfiring and hiccups all the time. It was a good race and great experience being there, but the views from TV are sooooooooo much better. I guess I'll have to spring for one of the luxury boxes next time. Hell, the air conditioning would be worth at least a few hundred. It was roasting hot. Lots of people wearing barely any clothes, which was awesome if we're talking a female 19 year old Brazilian tourist, not awesome at all if we're talking the 55 year old fat guy showing his ass crack and so much hair on his back it was matted down from his sweat. *shudder* Seeing the bikes go through the corkscrew was kind of funny. You'd see Hayden, Edwards and Roberts go through very cleanly, but some of the Europeans were still having a hell of time even on the Sunday practice. Their lines were terrible, especially Capirossi. It wasn't all Euros though: John Hopkins blew the entrance and went straight into the gravel trap, then somehow dirt-tracked it left and back down the track. It was shocking to see the speed difference between the front group and the slower riders. Hayden, Melandri and Rossi would leave it wide open until just before braking for a corner. Slow guys like James Ellison and Tony Elias would get off the gas and coast into corners at least a second or two before the front-runners. It sucked to see Rossi's engine blow. He was definitely going for a third place finish. Now the championship is going to be a long reach for him. He's had terrible luck this year!

posted by dusted at 07:49 PM on July 24

Thanks for the report, dusted. I hope that the US Grand Prix is enough of a success to keep a race here. The Camel Yamaha team needs to get Rossi's bike in order and real quick. This is the third race this year that his bike broke down. He's lost a huge amount of points due to breakdowns. Anymore of that crap happening and you'll see him driving a Ferrari in next year's F1 season. Can we just go ahead and rename Laguna Seca to Hayden's Bitch? At least just for the US Grand Prix? I don't anybody attacks that track like he does. What can you say about Dani Pedrosa? Well, he only weighs a buck ought three for one. That is one tiny dude. It's actually kind of amazing that he can throw a 500 pound bike around a track for 45 solid minutes like he can. Marco Melandri will just not go away, will he? Everybody keeps talking about Hayden, Pedrosa and Rossi, but everytime they glance over their shoulder, there's that madman Melandri. Conversely, what is wrong with Loris Capparossi? Every since that huge crash earlier this year, he's been terrible. Too bad too, as he is very young and was up there with the points leaders until the crash. Hopefully he can get his shit back together. I'm sure Ducati is saying the same thing right now.

posted by NoMich at 09:29 PM on July 24

I'd cut Capirossi some slack. The Ducatis have done well at the faster tracks, but Laguna Seca is about as tight and technical as they come. I was most disappointed in John Hopkins. If you can't get it up for this race, when will you?

posted by dusted at 10:15 PM on July 24

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