Press Release
(2005 FIM Road Racing World Championship)
YRC News
MotoGP : Gauloises Yamaha take podium double as Rossi wins at Le Mans

Round: 4 - Le Mans MotoGP
Circuit: LeMans
Date: 15 May 2005
Crowd: 75750
Temp: 15ēC
Weather: Cloudy

Gauloises Yamaha Team rider Valentino Rossi extended his lead at the top of the
MotoGP World Championship with a victory from pole position at the French Grand
Prix this afternoon. The Italian World Champion recorded the fastest ever
motorcycle lap of Le Mans in qualifying yesterday and followed it up with a new
lap record on the very last lap of the today's 28-lap race. He was joined on the
podium by team-mate Colin Edwards who took an excellent third place from the
second spot on the grid.

With Rossi making a poor start, Edwards charged to the front and led the way for
the first 20 laps. Meanwhile, Rossi made his way through the pack from sixth
place and joined the American ahead of the field, making his first attempt to
pass on lap 18 as Sete Gibernau (Honda) closed in from third place. The
Italian's attempted manoeuvre failed as he ran wide on the exit of the corner,
allowing Edwards to recover the lead and Gibernau to steal through for second.
However, three laps later the World Champion was back on the charge, passing
Gibernau and then Edwards on consecutive laps, this time hanging on to the lead.

With Gibernau passing Edwards in the same corner as Rossi, the pair went
head-to-head for the final eight laps and set a scorching pace. The breathtaking
battle went all the way to the final lap, when Rossi set a sensational new
circuit record to secure victory by 0.382 seconds from the Spaniard. His
championship tally now stands at 95 points from a possible 100 giving him a 37
point advantage over Marco Melandri (Honda, 58) whilst Edwards now moves up to
sixth overall with 41 points. The result also extended Yamaha's lead in the
constructors' and teams' World Championships.

The French based Fortuna Yamaha Team's home MotoGP brought home a good result
with young MotoGP rookie Toni Elias building on his solid 12th placed qualifying
performance to end the 28 lap event ninth, behind Kawasaki mounted Shinya Nakano
and ahead of Troy Bayliss (Honda). This was despite losing ground on the opening
lap when Elias had to avoid the crash of Carlos Checa (Ducati). Elias' Spanish
team-mate Ruben Xaus also finished the day with a solid 12th place.

Valentino Rossi (Gauloises Yamaha Team) 1st

"At the start of the race we were lucky that it didn't rain and we were able to
put on a fantastic show. It was a difficult and long but great race, although I
made my life more complicated by messing up the start. But I made positions up
lap by lap with some good overtaking moves and eventually caught Colin. I stayed
behind him for a while because his rhythm was good and nobody was catching up,
but then Gibernau arrived very fast from behind so I decided to try and overtake
and push to the maximum. Every lap I was better and better and I set the fastest
time of the race on the final lap, so that shows the excellent progress we have
made with the setting of the bike. I took pole position, the fastest lap of the
race and the victory and Colin was also on the podium, so it has been a perfect
weekend for us. The bike was very precise and I was able to get the power down
well so this looks good for the coming races. We continue our work here
tomorrow. I'm not sure what I have to test but I'm very happy to stay if we can
make even more progress. I'm looking forward to Mugello and hope to see lots of
Italian fans there."

Colin Edwards (Gauloises Yamaha Team) 3rd

"I desperately wanted to win that race but the other guys were just too fast
today! Basically we took a gamble on the race tyre because with the limited dry
track time in practice we only had five laps on it and didn't know if it would
work towards the end of the race. I got a good start, got into my rhythm of
mid-34s and knew that should be enough to keep me at the front. If you'd have
said to me you have to get into the 33s I'd have told you there was no way I
could do those times! But then Valentino and Sete came through and their pace
was incredible. The tyre got really hot and I had of couple of moments, so I
just decided to make sure of third place. It's an overdue reward for the
phenomenal job the team have been doing and now we have a firm base to go from
for the rest of the season."

Davide Brivio, Gauloises Yamaha Team Director

"It was a fantastic day for us - almost perfect! Valentino took the victory and
extended his lead in the championship, which is good to be able to take to
Mugello in the next round. It was a very important podium for Colin - I have
always believed that he was capable of this kind of performance. Today was a
result of the hard work put in by the team over the winter and the first three
rounds of the season. Now we want to see both riders on the podium as much as

Toni Elias (Fortuna Yamaha Team) 9th

"The crash that happened in the first chicane lost me a fair bit of ground
because I had to avoid Carlos, who was on the ground in front of me. After that
I managed to latch onto the second group and from then on I could stay with
them, but the first group were already gone - their pace was that high! I was
trying to make up some of the lost ground but I had to ride past my limit to do
so and I didn't fell comfortable doing that, especially as the track wasn't
offering the same grip as yesterday. We are testing here tomorrow and I am sure
it will prove very valuable for or Mugello preparations."

Ruben Xaus (Fortuna Yamaha Team) 12th

"At the beginning of the race I was struggling to find a race pace. But once I
started feeling comfortable I was able to ride with Bayliss, Jacque and Kenny. I
was able to improve my times, which is very important. Tomorrow we are testing
and I'm looking forward to developing on what I have achieved today."

Race classification MotoGP

Round: 4 - Le Mans MotoGP
Circuit: LeMans
Circuit Length: 4180m
Lap Record: 1' 33.678 (Valentino Rossi, 2005)
Fastest Lap Ever:  1' 33.678 (Valentino Rossi, 2005)

Race: 28 Laps

Pos.Rider            Manufacturer  Nat. Total Time
 1  V. Rossi         Yamaha        ITA  44'12.223
 2  S. Gibernau      Honda         ESP     +0.382
 3  C. Edwards       Yamaha        USA     +5.711
 4  M. Melandri      Honda         ITA     +7.276
 5  M. Biaggi        Honda         ITA     +7.703
 6  N. Hayden        Honda         USA    +21.770
 7  L. Capirossi     Ducati        ITA    +24.664
 8  S. Nakano        Kawasaki      JPN    +35.940
 9  T. Elias         Yamaha        ESP    +38.062
10  T. Bayliss       Honda         AUS    +52.607
11  O. Jacque        Kawasaki      FRA    +53.302
12  R. Xaus          Yamaha        ESP  +1' 0.342
13  K. Roberts       Suzuki        USA  +1' 0.514
14  J. vd Goorbergh  Honda         NED  +1'17.993
15  R. Rolfo         Ducati        ITA  +1'32.233
16  J. Hopkins       Suzuki        USA  +1 lap(s)

Fastest Race Lap:
Pos.Rider            Manufacturer  Nat. Total Time
 1  V. Rossi         Yamaha        ITA   1'33.678

Championship standings MotoGP

Pos.Rider                Manufacturer  Nat. Points
 1  Valentino Rossi      Yamaha        ITA    95
 2  Marco Melandri       Honda         ITA    58
 3  Sete Gibernau        Honda         ESP    53
 4  Max Biaggi           Honda         ITA    47
 5  Alex Barros          Honda         BRA    43
 6  Colin Edwards        Yamaha        USA    41
 7  Shinya Nakano        Kawasaki      JPN    27
 8  Olivier Jacque       Kawasaki      FRA    26
 9  Nicky Hayden         Honda         USA    26
10  Loris Capirossi      Ducati        ITA    23
11  Troy Bayliss         Honda         AUS    21
12  Jurgen vd Goorbergh  Honda         NED    18
13  Carlos Checa         Ducati        ESP    17
14  Ruben Xaus           Yamaha        ESP    16
15  Toni Elias           Yamaha        ESP    15

Manufacturers standings MotoGP

Pos.Manufacturer Points
 1  Yamaha         95
 2  Honda          81
 3  Kawasaki       47
 4  Ducati         30
 5  Suzuki         18
 6  Blata WCM       4
 7  Moriwaki        1