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Stoner: A very eventful qualifying session!

"It was a very eventful qualifying session for us... I ended up needing to lay the bike down to avoid the wall" - Casey Stoner.
Not even a crash and switch to his spare bike could prevent Casey Stoner taking his ninth pole position of the 2011 MotoGP season at Aragon on Saturday.

The world championship leader had just pushed pole almost a second ahead of Repsol Honda team-mate and nearest rival Dani Pedrosa - despite a 'cautious' first lap on the softer rear tyre - when he then ran off track and was forced to ditch his RC212V.

"It was a very eventful qualifying session for us!" said Stoner. "At the end of the session we put on the soft tyre and on the first lap I was a little too cautious in T1 as I wasn't sure if the tyres were warm enough.

"Then I pushed on the second lap and I had a lot more grip than I expected so I went through the corner much faster and I wasn't able to slow down. I pulled the bike up but it was difficult to reduce the speed and I ended up needing to lay the bike down to avoid the wall."

After switching to his less favoured spare bike, Stoner returned to the track and went even faster, claiming pole by 0.296sec from Pedrosa and 0.704sec from Ben Spies (Yamaha).

"Unfortunately, I wasn't able to restart the [crashed] bike which is a shame as I was happier on that one, but even on the second bike we were able to improve our time," he said. "Now we need to see what the weather brings for tomorrow but we're feeling good and I hope for a good race".

Stoner will start the race 35 points clear of Spies' team-mate Jorge Lorenzo, who qualified fourth on the grid, 0.819sec down on Stoner.

Pedrosa meanwhile is looking for further set-up improvements in order to stay with Stoner on Sunday.

"I'm happy with the first row on the grid. I've pushed to the limit to get a good position and we achieved it, but to be honest we still need to tune the set up of the bike a little, especially in front because I don't feel as comfortable as I'd like to and I'm struggling a little under braking," said the home star.

"For the race pace, Casey is quicker than us, he is riding very fast and smooth, so I guess he will set the pace tomorrow and we will need to stay close from the beginning of the race. Let's hope we can find something else on the setting tonight and have a good race in front of the Spanish fans".

Pedrosa will start round 14 (of 18) 35 points behind team-mate Andrea Dovizioso, who is third in the championship. Dovi will start fifth.

"I'm quite satisfied with this qualifying session as we have a good race pace but Casey is so strong and seems unbeatable," he admitted. "We will do our best to strengthen our position in the Championship and we want to fight Dani's comeback and gain some points on Lorenzo."

The Repsol Honda bikes and riders will have a special livery created by Spanish designer David Delfi for race day at Aragon.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Stoner, Aragon MotoGP 2011
Lorenzo, German MotoGP race 2017
Pedrosa, German MotoGP race 2017
Dovizioso, Lorenzo, Aleix Espargaro German MotoGP race 2017
Marquez, Pedrosa, Folger German MotoGP race 2017
Marquez, Pedrosa German MotoGP race 2017
Marquez, Pedrosa, Lorenzo German MotoGP race 2017
Lorenzo, Iannone, German MotoGP 2017
Rossi, Dovizioso, Vinales German MotoGP 2017
Lorenzo, German MotoGP 2017
Lorenzo, German MotoGP 2017
Dovizioso, German MotoGP 2017
Pedrosa, German MotoGP 2017
Pedrosa, German MotoGP 2017
Lorenzo, Iannone, Petrucci German MotoGP 2017
Zarco, Lorenzo, Iannone German MotoGP 2017
Vinales, Rossi, Dovizioso German MotoGP 2017
Rossi, Vinales, Dovizioso German MotoGP 2017

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Skiwi-1 - Unregistered

September 18, 2011 12:22 AM

Indeed Mankini, I can answer your question no problem whatsoever. If Rossi was on the same bike as Stoner is on this year he would be mixing it up regularly with Stoner, Pedrosa and Lorenzo I'm very sure. However and it's a very big however, for a great number of reasons he is not actually on that particular bike and is therefore not mixing it with those guys. IF you had been paying attention over the last few years you would have found that HRH Rossi was slandering hard the Stoner/Ducati combination as being an inept low performing combination - mainly due to the lack of commitment from Casey Stoner. Now however they have found that the truth is somewhat different to how they presented it and proving very hard to deal with and they themselves are performing way worse than Casey Stoner ever did. Truth is Casey Stoner is currently performing at a level even the great Rossi would find hard to contain given equal machinery.

vince - Unregistered

September 17, 2011 8:44 PM

@LCtanner , that bike stoner left, race winning bike iirc, and won at aragon, and faster than any ducati went today last year iirc, your right, must have been crap!!

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