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MotoGP flashback: First season of 800cc

After five years of 800cc racing, MotoGP engine capacity will increase back up to 1000cc this season.

Here's a look at how each manufacturer reacted to the previous capacity change, from 990cc to 800cc, for 2007...

Ducati:
Ducati, which had switched back to a 'screamer' engine design for 2007, stunned its rivals with a massive top-speed advantage at the start of the season.

The four Ducatis led the speed charts at round one (Qatar) with the next best bike, the Honda of Dani Pedrosa, 7km/h from the top. The fastest Yamaha was just 13th and some 15km/h down on Casey Stoner's Ducati!

Stoner went on to claim his and Ducati's first MotoGP title, winning ten races in the process. However the next best Ducati rider, team-mate Loris Capirossi, was only seventh in the championship. Capirossi's Motegi win was to be the only non-Stoner Desmosedici victory of the 800cc era.

Stoner's title victory was also the first for tyre manufacturer Bridgestone, with Michelin being beaten for the first time in 500cc/MotoGP since 1991. Ducati had switched to Bridgestone in 2005.

Yamaha:
Although Valentino Rossi and Yamaha won four races, they spent much of the season battling engine and tyre issues.

A pneumatic-valve version of the M1, aimed at closing the performance gap to Ducati, failed on its race debut with Rossi at Misano, while continued chatter problems prompted the Italian to split from Michelin at the end of the season.

Rossi lost second in the championship to Dani Pedrosa when his engine failed at the Valencia finale. It was an especially bitter blow since Rossi was riding with fractures in his hand to try and claim the single point needed to secure the runner-up spot - and was back on the 'normal' spring-valve engine.

Honda:
Honda, equally caught out by Ducati at the start of the year, pushed hard to catch-up but was forced to wait until round ten for its first win with the RC212V, at the hands of Pedrosa in Germany.

Pedrosa won again at the Valencia finale to steal a surprise second in the championship and, in a sign of how much ground HRC recovered, Pedrosa also set the fastest top speed ahead of the factory Ducatis.

However team-mate and reigning (990cc) world champion Nicky Hayden rarely looked comfortable on the compact RC212V and slipped to eighth in the championship, with three podiums.




Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Stoner, Rossi, Qatar MotoGP Race 2007
Stoner, Rossi, Qatar MotoGP Race 2007
Rossi, San Marino Moto3 Race 2014
Marc Van De Straten, San Marino Moto2 Race 2014
Marc Van De Straten, San Marino Moto2 Race 2014
Louis Rossi, San Marino Moto2 Race 2014
Louis Rossi, San Marino Moto2 Race 2014
Louis Rossi, San Marino Moto2 Race 2014
Louis Rossi, San Marino Moto2 Race 2014
Louis Rossi, San Marino Moto2 Race 2014
Louis Rossi, San Marino Moto2 Race 2014
Louis Rossi, San Marino Moto2 Race 2014
Rossi, San Marino MotoGP Race 2014
Rossi, San Marino MotoGP Race 2014
Rossi, San Marino MotoGP Race 2014
Rossi, San Marino MotoGP Race 2014
Rossi, San Marino MotoGP Race 2014
Rossi, San Marino MotoGP Race 2014

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Mick - Unregistered

January 18, 2012 3:08 PM

3 comments and its already a Stoner slagging and Rossi worshipping page. There used to be a tyre advert Hancook I think, "power is nothing without control" and that is so true, whilst the Ducati has always been fast in a straight line it has not handled. On the other hand for 30 odd years Yamaha has always concentrated on getting the sweetest handling bike, which will get you to the end of the race quicker. How come on the occasions this season when Rossi or another Ducati (Abraham had a few quick ones) was faster in a straight line Rossi didn't whip Casey's backside? The Yamaha's are still usually slow the traps, how come the Honda's having such an advantage were not 1,2,3,4,5 every race?



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