Attendance figures released by the promoter announced an overall attendance of 105,817 for the Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix MotoGP race at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. Friday – 25,079; Saturday 34,059; and Sunday 46,679. Last year’s Laguna figures were 131,250 overall: Friday – 41,798; Saturday – 42,573; and Sunday – 46,879.
GILL CAMPBELL, CEO & General Manager of Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, believed the crowd was larger than announced. She was generous in her praise for the “show” and the tens of thousands of people who turned out for the race. “And I love every one of them.”
Campbell can’t yet firm up the 2010 MotoGP date, until the Formula One calendar is released. Currently there is one more year on the original contract, and last year a new five-year agreement was signed.
The MotoGP Championship point spread among the top riders was just that – spread. VALENTINO ROSSI/Fiat Yamaha Team now has 151 points, nine ahead of his teammate, JORGE LORENZO, and 16 points ahead of CASEY STONER/Ducati MotoGP Team. Pole sitter/Race winner DANI PEDROSA/Repsol Honda Team is fourth in the standings with 92 points, and American COLIN EDWARDS/Monster Yamaha Tech 3 is fifth with 76 points. The other American rider, NICKY HAYDEN/Ducati MotoGP Team, is in twelfth with 38 points.
Yamaha leads the Constructor’s Championship with 185 points, ahead of Ducati. Fiat Team Yamaha is leading the Team Championship with 293 points, with runner-up Ducati having 173 points.
Three riders are Rookies this season, but only one was in Sunday’s race – NICCOLO CANEPA of Italy, who rides for Pramac Racing. He finished twelfth, the last motorcycle running. He is second in the Rookie Championship, with 16 points earned in the five of eight races he’s run.
One more number – the Margin of Victory winner Pedrosa had over Rossi – 0.344 seconds. Pedrosa had such a wide margin earlier on in the race, that on the last lap he eased up thinking he had sufficient cushion. He didn’t know that Rossi was hard charging behind him, closing the gap lap by lap. Suddenly, in Turn Eleven on the last lap, Pedrosa heard Rossi, and bobbled just a bit. He held on and took the checkered flag for Honda’s first victory of the season.