by Nico Cereghini
The transfer to Germany was not without problems: the appalling weather affected nearly all the practice sessions, made work on the bikes very complicated and, as a result, very few of the riders had their machines set up as they would have liked.
The Honda HRCs were the exception to the rule. What a lesson for Yamaha! Lorenzo finished second, 15 seconds behind the winner Pedrosa and the Yamaha team will no doubt be asking questions about what the unexpected lesson means. Dani Pedrosa had his sights set on Stoner who led from the second to the eighteenth lap and who had every appearance of repeating his win at Assen. Instead, the Spanish rider refused to let his team mate pull away then launched an attack on lap nineteen and took the lead. The pair continued to fight until, with the chequered flag in sight, Casey made a final attempt to take control of the race and fell: The Australian was out of it. Now Jorge Lorenzo unexpectedly leads the MotoGP standings with a lead of 14 points over Pedrosa and 20 on Stoner. Behind the leaders, the ever-consistent Andrea Dovizioso was happy to show his rivals the rear of his leathers: those with this view were Ben Spies, an excellent Stefan Bradl and Valentino Rossi right behind him in sixth position and only eight seconds off the podium. Hayden finished tenth and Petrucci seventeenth. Pasini was an early faller and Pirro went out with mechanical problems. The Ducatis appeared to be in fairly good shape and also to be making progress in the dry. Rossi prevailed on his team mates by fighting with Bradl on a level par. Do the results from Sachsenring really reflect the true situation or were they just the outcome of a somewhat unusual GP for the reasons stated above? We'll certainly find out more at Mugello.
Marc Marquez delivered a peerless performance to win in Moto2 with Pol Espargaro forced to start from far back on the grid following disastrous qualifying. Andrea Iannone was up with the front runners but unfortunately lost the front end and went into the gravel. He was able to rejoin the race but finished out of the points. Alex De Angelis put up a great fight with the Spanish rider but was passed by Kallio and finished in third place on the podium. Pol managed to come home in fourth place, the result of a magnificent come back from a lowly position on the grid. He is now second in the standings, 43 points behind the leader Marquez who has already won four races out of eight. Luthi came home fifth with Simone Corsi behind him.
The Moto3 race rounded off the day. The start was delayed due to a downpour and run in the wet. Cortese won the race while Viñales had a disastrous race, as did Fenati. Masbou came home second with Salom in third. Niccolò Antonelli, again the best of the Italian riders, finished in a lowly twelfth position.
The results from the Italian riders are very different from what we expected following the first few races of 2012. Let's hope that we can put things right at Mugello.