Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa wrapped up the 2013 MotoGP season with a 13th podium and with 300 points in third place in the standings, behind new World Champion Marc Marquez and runner-up Jorge Lorenzo.
Pedrosa also ended the Valencia race between Lorenzo and Marquez, after a 30 lap contest which saw him come under attack from outgoing champion Lorenzo – who tried to slow the front running group around the 4km Spanish track.
The battle between Lorenzo and Pedrosa saw the latter pushed off track and down into fifth place at one stage, but he regained ground quickly – overtaking Alvaro Bautista and Valentino Rossi, before teammate Marquez let him through for second.
Marquez did that, of course, because he did not want to get into a fight with Pedrosa, the rookie knowing that third place was enough to clinch the title.
Reacting to the tangles with Lorenzo, Pedrosa said, “I started well and I could see that Jorge was trying not to go too fast at the beginning and I tried to make a move forward but every time I tried to make a pass he fought back. We had a strong fight. I tried to change my passing points so it was harder for him to get back on me and he always found a way to do that. A couple of times he pushed too hard and the second time I nearly crashed at turn two.”
He continued, “His (Lorenzo’s) strategy was clear and I understand, but I was trying to get in front and he was fighting real strong. We had a good battle and I had a couple of touches from behind. Obviously, when I felt he was touching me I had to pick up the bike. I had no other option. Of course, it’s more learning for the future.”
Lorenzo gave his version of events, saying, “Obviously, I didn’t want to touch Dani or do anything to him, but I had my strategy and I had to try until the end. The first time he braked earlier than I expected and the second time he tried to stay in the same position on the outside and we found ourselves in the same place. I say sorry to him because I never want to touch any rider.”
Pedrosa concluded his post-race comments by reflecting on his best and worst moments of 2013, stating “for sure, the good moments are when you win and you can enjoy it with your team and celebrate the victory. Of course, the bad moments are when you crash. Obviously, the worst was Aragon which was not my mistake. Another bad one, which was my mistake, was Sachsenring when I crashed and broke my collarbone.”