Casey Stoner believes new MotoGP champion Jorge Lorenzo will be the front runner for the Portuguese Grand Prix, even if he is optimistic that he and Ducati continue their strong run of form over the final two rounds.
Stoner has been the rider to beat in recent weeks, the Australian winning three of the last four races to put him within striking distance of snatching second position overall from future Repsol Honda team-mate Dani Pedrosa.
However, Stoner anticipates Lorenzo, with his strong record at Estoril on a MotoGP bike, to be a strong contender this weekend.
“I have had a mixture of different results at Estoril - some good like my first 250cc win in 2005 and a podium in 2007, some not so good like when we had a problem with the on-board camera in 2008. Then we were back on the podium again in 2009… I was fast there last year but Jorge was a little faster. He is very strong at this circuit and I think we can expect him to be so again next Sunday.
“We just have to focus on the job of setting the bike up. We know that there are a lot of bumps here and our bike usually reacts quite aggressively over bumps, so we will have to see if we can adapt the set up. The GP10 has worked well in all kinds of conditions over the last few races so we're pretty confident.”