Andrea Dovizioso finished a dramatic MotoGP race at the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli in fourth position, the Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team rider putting up a fantastic race long fight for the podium in hot and sunny conditions.
Dovizioso was in contention for his sixth podium of an impressive 2012 World Championship campaign throughout the race, which was shortened to 27-laps after an aborted first start.
When the action did finally get underway in front of his home crowd of 45,104 fans, Dovizioso kept himself in contention for the podium right until the final moments of the race.
His podium bid started on lap 24 when he swept by Stefan Bradl, and he then immediately launched a thrilling pursuit of Alvaro Bautista in third.
Dovizioso, who was looking for a second podium on home soil in 2012 after finishing third in Mugello back in early July, started the final lap 0.493s behind Bautista.
The Italian quickly slashed that deficit to set up an intriguing final few corners and it looked like he had timed his bid for the podium for perfection when he passed Bautista at the final corner.
Unfortunately he ran wide on the exit and after a photo finish he was awarded fourth position, with Bautista taking third by just 0.003s.
British rider Cal Crutchlow was also in the hunt for a second successive podium after he made a solid start from the front row of the grid.
The 26-year-old was running a comfortable and consistent pace when he crashed at the first corner on lap five. He walked away unhurt but he was unable to continue after his YZR-M1 suffered a bent right handlebar in the spill.
Andrea Dovizioso 4th ? 163 points:
?It is a pity to finish so close to the podium in my home race because I really wanted to make the top three for the first time in Misano. It was a difficult race right from the start because I had a problem with the front and could not brake hard and enter the corners like during the practice. That meant I had to change my lines and I was not as fast as I expected and I could not catch Valentino and I could not push. I just had to ride smooth and at the end my feeling improved a bit because I could at least fight for the podium. It is a pity I couldn't take third from Alvaro but I ran wide exiting the final corner. I did my best and the good thing is that despite a difficult race I was still battling for the podium right to the very end. We still scored some very important points for the Championship and hopefully with a better feeling with the bike I can be back on the podium at the Motorland Aragon.?
Cal Crutchlow DNF ? 122 points:
?I got a really bad start from the front row and quickly lost a couple of places. Actually it was not that I missed the lights but I released the clutch and nothing happened because the clutch was already out and that was my mistake. Luckily I managed to stay in fifth position but then it was really difficult to pass Andrea. On lap four I could see I was catching him a little but he is a demon on the brakes and I was also having a problem stopping the bike with a full fuel load. I wanted to pass him at the first corner but as soon as I got in the middle of the corner I lost the front. I got a bang on my left leg and thought it might be injured but the feeling came back quickly and I could have got back in the race. But the right handlebar was badly bent so the throttle didn't move. I am disappointed because looking at how the race unfolded I gave up a great chance to be back on the podium. Rossi and Bradl recovered quite a few points on me too today, so I need to get back on track in Aragon to make sure I keep fifth place in the World Champions hip.?
Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Press Release
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