MotoGP »

Stoner's fantastic weekend continues

"There is no doubt that the Honda suits this track, I've been looking forward to riding it here for a while now and I'm not disappointed" – Casey Stoner.
Casey Stoner has an excellent chance of claiming Honda's first home Japanese MotoGP win since 2004, after taking his tenth pole position of the season at Motegi.

The world championship leader continued Honda's domination of the Japanese weekend - which has seen an RCV lead every session - after overcoming a surprise attack from title rival Jorge Lorenzo (Yamaha).

Off pace in free practice, Lorenzo snatched pole with five minutes to go, before being pushed down to second by Stoner - whose record-breaking meant he finished the session 0.256sec in front of the Spaniard.

"Everything has gone very well so far this weekend, we've been fastest in all but one session so it's been fantastic," said Stoner, winner of last year's race for Ducati.

"We tried a few different settings this afternoon and didn't really improve so we'll probably go back to this morning's setting for tomorrow. We'll have to watch the weather as this will affect the set-up, there's also a chance of rain so it could get complicated."

Stoner's Repsol Honda team-mates Andrea Dovizioso and Dani Pedrosa will start third and fourth.

"Jorge has been riding fantastic, as has Dovi and Dani, but there is no doubt that the Honda suits this track, I've been looking forward to riding it here for a while now and I'm not disappointed!" said Stoner of the stop-go Motegi layout. "Tomorrow will be a tough race, but the team is working hard and we'll do our best."

Dovizioso was delighted with his front row start, although the Italian was over half-a-second from Stoner.

"I'm very happy to be on the front row here in Motegi!" said Dovi, yet to sign for 2012. "This afternoon we improved again from this morning and I feel very confident, especially under braking. We still haven't decided on the tyre for tomorrow as we are good on both compounds but I feel positive for the race and for the fight for the podium tomorrow. I'm really happy with the work of the team and the Honda is working really well at this track, I think tomorrow we will have a great race!"

Pedrosa held pole for much of the session, but lost out in the closing stages and was eventually left 0.699sec from the top.

"The qualifying practice started quite well for us, we were doing lap times with a consistent pace preparing for the race and everything seemed to be going well," he confirmed. "But at the end, when I switched to soft tyres, I couldn't get them working, I had much less grip.

"I thought it could be a problem with the first tyre and so I came back to the garage to change it but again I had the same issue. I am disappointed not to be on the front row, but the good feeling with the race tyres is good news.

"We will need to see how the weather is tomorrow, if the temperature drops a lot maybe some riders will use the soft, but considering my feeling, I will probably choose the hard one. The race will be very tough with Stoner, Dovizioso and maybe Lorenzo, but we want to fight until the end."

Stoner will be chasing his ninth win of the season on Sunday, while Repsol Honda will be hoping to fill all three places on the podium for the first time this year.



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Lorenzo and Stoner, Japanese MotoGP 2011
Jorge Lorenzo, Mercedes AMG Petronas, Silverstone [Credit: Monster Energy]
Zarco`s Yamaha, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Zarco`s Yamaha, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Zarco`s Yamaha, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Zarco`s Yamaha, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Zarco`s Yamaha, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Zarco`s Yamaha, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Zarco`s Yamaha, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Zarco`s Yamaha, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Zarco`s Yamaha, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Pedrosa, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Pedrosa, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Pedrosa, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Dovizioso, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Dovizioso, Valencia MotoGP test, November 2016
Dovizioso, Valencia MotoGP tests, November 2016
Dovizioso, Valencia MotoGP tests, November 2016

Join the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.


Honda Who? - Unregistered

October 01, 2011 12:33 PM

Without Stoner Honda would not be getting all the good press. And please don't mention the what if Pedrosa and Simoncelli thing. Pedrosa is out every year on his own anyways. It is not the bike it is STONER.

Stavros - Unregistered

October 01, 2011 12:07 PM

Sure Motegi suits the Honda, they own the track. Didn't stop Casey winning there on the GP10 though, and Yamaha would still be on pole and winning the title without if not for Stoner.



© 1999 - 2016 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.