Hate to say it but the Doctor is past it now...Go STONER!
It is looking like Rossi is indeed past it. For years he never missed a start, and usually finished. Since the accident that left him out for most of that season he seems to have lost confidence, he has been off quite a few times, and out classed by his team-mate. He has signed up with Ducati for another two years (2013/14), but it remains to seen if he sees it out. At best it looks like he might help develop the Duc, but podiums are likely to be few and far between.
It will be a pity. The Doctor's no holds barred attitude made for some exciting racing. He was not afraid to make contact with other bikes, if that is what it took.
The front two rows of today's race are an interesting line up, with only the Honda of Casey Stoner in the front two rows. He is 2nd to Lorenzo on pole, riding a factory Yamaha. His team-mate, Ben Spies is 4th. The privateer Yamaha powered team, Tech 3, Have Cal Crutchlow at 3rd, and Andrea Dovizioso at 6th. Rossi's Ducati team-mate, Andy Hayden is 5th......... and Rossi is 12th.
Crutchlow could certainly be one to watch. I was impressed by him as a person in an interview. Lorenzo too; he seems to have matured a lot over the past year.
Stefan Bradl, up to MotoGP fro Moto2, is on the 3rd row, on a Honda powered bike. All told 21 starters, up from 13 or 14 last year, should make for some interesting racing.
Some of the best racing over the past couple of years has been in 600cc Honda powered Moto2. Sometimes the position of the five or six front runners would change several times in one lap. There are 33 starters in the class this year.
Moto3, the new 250cc single class, has 32 starters. With a minimum weight of148 kg for bike and
rider, and relatively skinny tyres they look tiny compared to the MotoGP class bikes. Does the Hilton bimbo still sponsor a team?
I find track racing interesting, but am no Rossi wannabe. Trials, or maybe Enduro, are the classes of competition I would have had a go it if the opportunity had presented itself.
Well, it is all on in a few hours. I'll be catching the Moto3 race at 11.00 PM (Thai time) if there is a pub open and showing it. They have been asked to close for the three days of the funeral of a princess, but I gather it is a voluntary thing. Unfortunately the MotoGP race will be way past the bed time of an old chappy who gets up about ****-crow..... I don't need an alarm clock where I live.