Capirossi wins Japan MotoGP

Capirossi wins Japan MotoGP

MOTEGI – Ducati ace Loris Capirossi won the MotoGP Japanese Grand Prix for the second straight year yesterday, leading an Italian one-two-three finish.

Valentino Rossi, chasing his sixth straight premier-class title, finished second on a Yamaha and Honda rider Marco Melandri was third. Championship leader Nicky Hayden of the United States finished fifth on a Honda with his points advantage over Rossi narrowed to 12 at 236 with two races to go in the 17-leg season.Capirossi, who started in pole position after breaking his own course record in qualifying, gunned to the lead around the first corner with Melandri and Rossi trailing close behind.The 33-year-old veteran led a train of riders with the order little changed until the 15th lap when Rossi overtook Melandri around the S-curve to move into second and within 1.5 seconds of the leader.Capirossi kept pushing, driving hard around the circuit and widening his lead over Rossi lap by lap to finish in 43min 13.585sec.Rossi crossed the line 5.088 seconds behind with Melandri third 3.290 seconds farther back.Hayden, the 2002 US Superbike champion chasing his first GP title, finished fifth as Japanese Shinya Nakano crashed his Kawasaki on the 24th and final lap as he tried to overtake fourth-placed Spanish Ducati rider Sete Gibernau.Nampa-AFPChampionship leader Nicky Hayden of the United States finished fifth on a Honda with his points advantage over Rossi narrowed to 12 at 236 with two races to go in the 17-leg season.Capirossi, who started in pole position after breaking his own course record in qualifying, gunned to the lead around the first corner with Melandri and Rossi trailing close behind.The 33-year-old veteran led a train of riders with the order little changed until the 15th lap when Rossi overtook Melandri around the S-curve to move into second and within 1.5 seconds of the leader.Capirossi kept pushing, driving hard around the circuit and widening his lead over Rossi lap by lap to finish in 43min 13.585sec.Rossi crossed the line 5.088 seconds behind with Melandri third 3.290 seconds farther back.Hayden, the 2002 US Superbike champion chasing his first GP title, finished fifth as Japanese Shinya Nakano crashed his Kawasaki on the 24th and final lap as he tried to overtake fourth-placed Spanish Ducati rider Sete Gibernau.Nampa-AFP

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