Moto GP

MotoGP Descends on Yamaha`s Homeland for Motegi

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The MotoGP paddock finally arrives in Japan this week for round 15 of the 2011 World Championship at the Twin Ring Motegi circuit.

The race had been delayed for the second year running, this year due to the Tsunami and earthquake which caused widespread devastation in the country.

Reigning World Champion Jorge Lorenzo now has just four races left to close the gap to Championship leader Casey Stoner, currently 44 points ahead.

Lorenzo is no stranger to the Motegi podium having taken victory in 2009. He narrowly missed out on a 2010 podium after a fierce battle with then team mate Valentino Rossi, ultimately finishing in fourth.

"Japan is a home race for Yamaha and for us it is always a pleasure to ride here," Lorenzo said. "Motegi is a track where I have won before and last year I had a nice fight for the podium. I would like to win again here, so that is my aim this weekend. After all the confusion with Fukushima we are here, fit and ready to put on a good show for Yamaha in this special year for them. We will begin on Friday and try to do everything really well!"

Ben Spies arrives in Motegi for his second ever Japanese MotoGP race. Last year saw the Texan deliver a master class in overtaking having lost several places after running wide on the second lap to avoid a rider. Spies recovered from 15th place to take eighth at the line, carving his way through the competition to do so.

"I really enjoyed the race here last year once I got over the frustration of losing so many places in the opening laps," Spies said. "I managed to overtake quite a few riders on my way back up to eighth which always makes the race more exciting. I hope to be higher this year from the start so won't have to do so much catching up! We're racing in the red and white livery again which always seems to bring me luck!"

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