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Lorenzo Conquers QatarYamaha Factory Racing rider Jorge Lorenzo claimed a sensational victory this evening under the dramatic floodlights of the Losail circuit, finally claiming his first premier class Grad Prix of Qatar win.
art and held off rival Casey Stoner for the first few laps before conceding the lead and tucking into second. The Mallorcan then played the waiting game, never letting Stoner more than two seconds ahead. With seven laps to go he started to close the distance as StonerÔÇÖs pace dropped off, holding off a determined Dani Pedrosa on his tail to take the lead. Lorenzo crossed the line 0.852 seconds ahead of Pedrosa, taking the lead in the 2012 Championship standings with 25 points.
Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha) - Position 1st - Time 42'44.214
ÔÇťWhat an amazing race! I put everything I have, all my energy into the track, this victory is because I never gave up, kept pushing and trying. Casey was very strong at the beginning and opened a gap. Fortunately for us he struggled at the end and dropped his pace where I could keep mine so I managed to pass him. I am very grateful to Yamaha because they have made a big step this winter on the YZR-M1.ÔÇŁ
Dani Pedrosa (Honda) - Position 2nd
ÔÇťI'm very happy with this result because we have been able to turn around all the problems we had during the weekend. After a good pre-season we got here and everything went wrong; I had flu and a fever, I crashed on Friday, then the qualifying practice was a disaster. So, it's very good to leave here with this podium, even if I feel little bit sad because I thought I could win this race; I had it in my hands for a while. The team did a fantastic job and we saw things very different after warm-up. Then I managed a perfect start which was a key moment in the race, and I was able to stay with Casey and Jorge. In the end, with four laps to go I tried to take the lead, but Lorenzo was cleverer than me this time and choose a better strategy. I passed him but he overtook me immediately and also Casey, then I was behind Casey for one lap and lost contact with Jorge. Anyway, it's a good start to the season and we will try to do better in Jerez.ÔÇŁ
Casey Stoner (Honda) - Position 3rd
ÔÇťIt wasn't really the way we wanted to finish the race weekend here. After FP3 and qualifying it was always going to be a tough race for us, but in the end it came in the wrong areas. The bike was working well for us. I definitely had the package and the pace to lead the field, which was really positive. However, I suffered from really bad arm pump. After three or four laps I felt it but it gradually got worse. I tried to pull a little gap from Jorge and Dani and put in the minimal effort possible to retain the gap and try and win, but as the race continued it got worse and worse and eventually the muscles had nothing more to give. I couldn't hold onto the handlebars properly and it made things really difficult, so it was a disappointing race for this reason, but for many other technical reasons it was very promising.ÔÇŁ
The MotoGP paddock now moves to Jerez in three weeks time for round two on the 29th April.
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