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MotoGP Preview: Grand Prix Of Germany

EVENT: Grand Prix of Germany

WHERE: Sachsenring Circuit, Hohenstein-Ernstthal, Germany. Circuit is 2.281 miles (3.671 km), with 13 turns. Race is 30 laps.

WHEN: Sunday, July 18. It is the eighth of 18 events this season.

2009 RACE WINNER: Valentino Rossi, by .099 of a second over Jorge Lorenzo

2009 POLE WINNER: Jorge Lorenzo, 1 minute, 32.520 seconds

U.S. TV: 8-9 a.m. (ET), Sunday, July 18, SPEED (live). Moto2: 1-2 p.m. (ET), Tuesday, July 20, SPEED. 125cc: Noon-1 p.m. (ET), Tuesday, July 20, SPEED.

THE AMERICANS: U.S. riders Nicky Hayden (Owensboro, Ky., Ducati Team), Ben Spies (Longview, Texas, Monster Yamaha Tech 3) and Colin Edwards (Houston, Monster Yamaha Tech 3) will compete in the MotoGP race. Hayden is tied for fourth in the MotoGP World Championship standings, with Spies eighth and Edwards tied for 10th. Kenny Noyes (Borrego Springs, Calif., Jack&Jones by Antonio Banderas) will compete in the Moto2 race. Noyes is 17th in the Moto2 World Championship standings.

Nicky Hayden (after practice July 16): “All in all, not a bad first day for us. It was really important to get as much information as we could today, to try all the tires and a couple of different setups because it looks like there’s a good chance of rain tomorrow. We started out struggling quite a bit - right in the beginning it wasn’t too good, but I switched bikes and immediately got a better feeling. There are a couple of parts on the track where I am quite fast but a few sections where I’m losing a lot, and every tenth counts around here. I mean, a lot of tracks you look for tenths, but around here literally half-a-tenth can make a big difference. But it’s a cool track; I like it. That fast corner out the back is a lot of fun.”

Ben Spies (after practice July 16): “I'm really happy to be so high up after the first session, and I think I figured out this track pretty quickly. It is good to start the weekend in the top five, and that gives us a platform to build on. This circuit is pretty tight and twisty and there are a lot of left-hand corners, but I like it because there is quite a lot of elevation that makes it fun. It felt like being out on a dirt track bike, and I see Nicky is right up there, too. It's a positive start, and that's all I can ask for.”

Colin Edwards (after practice July 16): “The nature of this track means the times are always close, and I'm not even a second off the best time, but I'm down in 13th. I'm only around three-tenths behind Ben, but he's nine places further up than me. I've completely changed the setting of the bike here, and that's meant putting way more weight on the rear than I've ever done. My riding style is typically all over the front end but with the results not being what I've wanted or expected so far this season, it was time to change something. So I've just got to trust the front and work on the rear. I'm putting more of my body weight on the rear and with the setting of the bike. We've shifted a lot of weight back on the rear, and it works really good so far and it feels easier to make the lap time.”

THEY SAID IT: “Immediately after the crash, the doctors said it could be five months before I was fit to return. Maybe five months to play football, but I just need to ride the bike.” – Fiat Yamaha Team rider Valentino Rossi, talking about his return to racing just six weeks after suffering a compound fracture of his lower right leg

FAST FACTS: Seven-time MotoGP World Champion Valentino Rossi returns to race for the Fiat Yamaha Team just 44 days after suffering a compound fracture of his lower right leg in a vicious, high-side crash during the Italian Grand Prix. 2008 Red Bull Indianapolis GP winner Rossi missed four races and fell from second to seventh in the standings … 2007 World Champion Casey Stoner signed a contract July 9 to move from Ducati to the Honda factory team starting in 2011. Speculation is rampant that Rossi may replace Stoner next season at Ducati in a dream Italian pairing … Sachsenring is one of just four circuits on which MotoGP points leader Jorge Lorenzo has no victories in any class. The others are Valencia, Laguna Seca and Aragon … With his victory July 4 at Catalunya, Lorenzo became the first Yamaha rider to win three consecutive races from pole since American legend Eddie Lawson in 1986 … Lorenzo has finished on the podium in each of the first seven races of the season, joining legends John Surtees, Mike Hailwood, Giacomo Agostini, Wayne Rainey, Mick Doohan, Kevin Schwantz and Valentino Rossi in achieving that feat in the premier class … American Nicky Hayden has recorded more podium finishes at the Sachsenring during his MotoGP career than any other circuit, placing third in four consecutive years from 2004-07. Hayden won the World Championship in 2006 … American rookie phenom Ben Spies never has raced at Sachsenring, the sixth circuit out of eight so far this season where he has no experience. Spies is eighth in points, the top rookie in the standings in 2010 … American Colin Edwards finished fourth in 2007 at this event, his career-best finish at Sachsenring … 125cc points leader Marc Marquez became the youngest rider to win four consecutive races in the World Championship with his victory July 4 at Catalunya. Marquez, 17, broke the record set by 18-year-old Valentino Rossi in the 125cc class in 1997 … Spanish riders have won the 17 consecutive 125cc races in the World Championship, dating back to last season.

***

IMS tickets: Tickets for the 2010 Red Bull Indianapolis GP are on sale now. A new structure offers additional value and flexibility to fans attending the annual MotoGP event.

Among the highlights of the new ticket structure are lower prices and single-day reserved and general admission tickets for Race Day, Sunday, Aug. 29.

Fans can order tickets online at www.imstix.com, call the IMS ticket office at (317) 492-6700, or (800) 822-INDY outside the Indianapolis area or visit the ticket office at the IMS Administration Building at the corner of Georgetown Road and 16th Street. Online orders can be made at any time. Hours for phone orders and the ticket office are 8 a.m.-5 p.m. (ET) Monday-Friday.

General admission tickets provide access to the grounds and to the viewing mounds along the infield section of the circuit, which provide excellent angles to see the greatest riders in the world.

Tickets for groups of 20 or more also are on sale. Contact the IMS Group Sales Department at (866) 221-8775 for more information.

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