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I'll confess: I've not watched much of MotoGP this year. The racing hasn't really been that good and the Honda's seemingly have too great an advantage.
From the little I have seen, however, there have been two names that have stood out. Alvaro Bautista and Marco Simoncelli. Bautista has done wonders with the Suzuki. Granted, Simoncelli has been on the Honda and thus should have found things easier, he's managed to combine that with his wild riding style and truly make things interesting this year.
As you can probably tell, I didn't watch the Sepang GP. Stoner had already won and I'm basically waiting for next year. To be honest, after reading about it a couple of days ago, I'm pretty glad I didn't. The crash is reputedly horrific. For those of you who care to (I don't) the video can be found below
From what I can tell, he managed to lowside, but stay on the bike. Somehow or other, the bike then pushed him back across the track and straight in front of Colin Edwards, who could do nothing but run over him. Rossi was also reputedly right there. Rumours are both would retire afterward, but I'd be surprised. Racers are made of tougher stuff and accept that's the risk. I'd expect Valencia to be a much quieter race.
Many riders didn't like Simoncelli for his aggressive riding style and sure, he caused a few accidents in recent races. He was a complete freak in the 250's, but still somehow managed to win the championship. Despite his style, he also managed to instill a sense of unpredicatability to races and in recent weeks, there was a real sense he was going places. You could see that from the increasing number of fans at races.
A recent interview with him in Bike suggested a man that was growing up and finally learning what made him so special. The real tragedy, to me, is that we will never see what he would have become.
Marco, you will be sorely missed.