MotoGP: Capirossi wins at Motegi

And Stoner seals the MotoGP title

Capirossi wins but Stoner makes history for Ducati

DUCATI'S LORIS Capirossi clinched his first win of the year at the Japanese Grand Prix, but team-mate Casey Stoner stole the glory by securing the 2007 MotoGP crown for himself, Ducati and tyre manufacturer Bridgestone.

Twenty-one-year-old Stoner could only managed sixth place in the action packed race but it was enough to give the young Australian his first MotoGP title.

The race got underway in wet conditions with polesitter Dani Pedrosa taking the lead on lap one from Toni Elias and Valentino Rossi. But it was Kawasaki's Anthony West that proved to be Pedrosa's biggest threat in the early stages, with the Australian taking the lead on lap three. West's fortune was short-lived, as the Australian was given a ride-through penalty for a jump start, leaving the likeable Antipodean languishing at the back of the pack.

Drying conditions mid-race were to turn events on their head. One-by-one the riders elected to pit and change for machines shod with full slicks. First of the front runners was Capirossi and it proved to be a masterful move, as the Italian surged to the front while his rivals struggled to find grip on overheated wet tyres.

Capirossi held his lead, taking the chequered flag over ten seconds ahead of Randy de Puniet, who put in an amazing ride to finish second. Tony Elias, who's only recently recovered from a broken femur, also put in a spirited performance holding off Yamaha's Sylvian Guintoli for third place.

1 L Capirossi (ITA) Ducati MotoGP 00:00.100

2 R De Puniet (FRA) Kawasaki Racing 00:10.853

3 A Elias (ESP) Honda Gresini 00:11.526

4 S Guintoli (FRA) Yamaha Tech3 00:12.192

5 M Melandri (ITA) Fortuna Honda 00:28.569

6 C Stoner (AUS) Ducati MotoGP 00:31.179

7 A West (AUS) Kawasaki Racing 00:50.001

8 A Barros (BRA) Ducati d'Antin 00:52.343

9 N Hayden (USA) Honda Repsol 00:53.629

10 J Hopkins (USA) Suzuki MotoGP 00:59.715

11 C Vermulen (AUS) Suzuki MotoGP 01:02.804

12 M Tamada (JPN) Yamaha Tech3 01:09.313

13 V Rossi (ITA) Yamaha Factory 01:09.699

14 C Edwards (USA) Yamaha Factory 01:11.375

15 S Itoh (JPN) Ducati d'Antin 01:12.290

16 S Nakano (JPN) Konica Minolta Honda 01:32.979

17 A Yanagawa (JPN) Kawasaki Racing 49:00.000

18 C Checa (ESP) Honda LCR 50:00.000