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Stoner increases points lead at Assen

"I tried everything possible to catch Spies, but he was able to retain the advantage and start to pull some more" - Casey Stoner.
Whatever happens, Casey Stoner will continue to lead the MotoGP World Championship after next weekend's Mugello round.

The Repsol Honda star pushed his points advantage over the one-race win mark (25) by finishing second to Ben Spies in Saturday's Dutch TT, while closest title rival Jorge Lorenzo was left to claim a comeback sixth after a first-lap tangle with Marco Simoncelli.

Stoner witness that accident and, having also suffered a cold-tyre fall on Friday morning, was relative cautious in the opening laps. Once up to speed, Spies was already several seconds ahead, and a sore Stoner was happy enough to settle for second.

"Today we would have liked to challenge for the win, but the way this weekend has gone for us I'm really very happy for a podium finish and to take some valuable points," said Stoner, now 28 points clear of Lorenzo after seven rounds.

"Yesterday we weren't happy with the bike the set up, so today we made some changes and tried to get some more feeling, but unfortunately in the warm up we didn't get a proper chance to try it, which meant we started the race with a set up we didn't really know.

"After the crash yesterday I'm a little bit sore, in the middle part of the race I started to have some problems in the left hand corners with the shoulder but in general we knew we didn't really have the pace to stay with Ben.

"I tried everything possible to catch him, but he was able to retain the advantage and start to pull some more, so my congratulations to Ben, he rode a great race, but for us it was just important to get points today".

Stoner's team-mate Andrea Dovizioso finished third, 20sec from Stoner and 27sec from Spies.

After missing the past three grands prix, long-time Repsol rider Dani Pedrosa will rejoin his team-mates for the Italian Grand Prix.

Hiroshi Aoyama replaced the Spaniard at Assen, where he rode to eighth place.

"First of all I'd like to thank the whole Repsol Honda Team and HRC, and I'm sorry for the accident yesterday!" said Aoyama. "It was quite a tough weekend due to the conditions and situation, not ideal to go racing in but we couldn't do anything about this.

"We tried our best during this short space of time and I'm happy I enjoyed the race even if in a lot of pain after yesterday's crash. In the race it was quite tough, but from mid-race I was able to improve lap by lap and achieve good consistency.

"The team did a very good job so thanks again to them as I have had a very nice and special experience riding Dani's bike. This experience has taught me things and made me a better rider, I hope one day I can return to this team.

"Dani will return next race and I am sure he will be happy to be back on his bike!"

First practice for the Italian Grand Prix takes place on Friday morning.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Stoner and Spies, Dutch MotoGP Race 2011
Pedrosa, Qatar MotoGP 2017
Pedrosa, Qatar MotoGP 2017
Pedrosa, Qatar MotoGP 2017
Pedrosa, Qatar MotoGP 2017
Maverick Vinales, Pedrosa, Qatar MotoGP 2017
Pedrosa, Qatar MotoGP 2017
Pedrosa, Qatar MotoGP 2017
Pedrosa, Rider line up, Qatar MotoGP 2017
Dovizioso, Pedrosa, Marquez, Rossi Qatar MotoGP 2017
Dovizioso, Qatar MotoGP 2017
Crutchlow, Tardozzi, Dovizioso Qatar MotoGP 2017
Dovizioso, Qatar MotoGP 2017
Lorenzo, Qatar MotoGP 2017
Lorenzo, Qatar MotoGP 2017
Lorenzo, Qatar MotoGP 2017
Pedrosa, Qatar MotoGP 2017
Honda, exhaust, Qatar MotoGP 2017

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bozgp - Unregistered

June 26, 2011 11:22 AM

I don't think Stoner's PR is bad at all. I think if you read the comments on this board or perhaps other boards, you may be influenced to think that. I have listened to his interviews and he doesn't seem like a jerk at all. However, if you read the posts form regular ja*k offs, I can see how you could develop that view. People on here hardly read an actual article. Instead they read the headline and create a story of their own based on the headline. You have to understand that journalistic integrity is a jounralist biggest enemy in todays world. Journalism is supported by advertising. Don't ever forget that!

waza555 - Unregistered

June 27, 2011 3:34 AM

I think Steve Parrish summed things up well in his column about Casey Stoner. Quote: He has had some rough treatment from British fans in the past but if you haven't got respect for Stoner then there is something wrong with you. Arguably he's not the most gregarious, fan-loving rider out there but he is not rude in any way. He calls a spade a spade and gets on with it and he is a fabulously talented rider who is the only man proven to tame the Ducati, which even the great Valentino Rossi has struggled with this year.

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