MotoGP rookie Stefan Bradl has ascended to sixth position in the 2012 MotoGP World Championship standings after shrugging off his inexperience at Laguna Seca to finish in seventh.
The in-form German rider was looking for a solid finish on the LCR Honda in what was his first-ever appearance in the United States Grand Prix and duly achieved his objective with linear progress throughout the weekend.
Getting a strong start to become embroiled in a battle with both Tech 3 Yamahas initially, though Bradl's pace dropped during the second-half of the race to cede a position to Nicky Hayden, he was pleased with seventh place having started the weekend from scratch.
“Actually it was a positive debut for us in Laguna,” he said. “I am quite happy about this seventh final place. In general it was a pretty difficult weekend for us because we mainly started to work on the bike Saturday afternoon as on Friday I had to learn the track.
“Basically in the beginning of the race I was quite comfortable on the bike because we had full fuel on board but after ten laps I started to lose confidence compared to Dovi and Crutchlow due to the front end issues that we already had yesterday.
“From that moment it was too dangerous for me entering the corners with the same speed. Then I tried to keep Nicky behind him but I could see he was faster than me so I preferred to maintain my position scoring further points in the classification. I think we have done our best and we keep this experience for next season.”
The result means Bradl is classified in a new peak of sixth position, level with Nicky Hayden and ahead of Valentino Rossi.