Former Ducati MotoGP star Casey Stoner says he backs the Italian factory's decision to make its Desmosedici motorcycle more flexible for 2011.

Indeed, it's a continuation of what he himself was trying to do last year.

Stoner has moved to Honda after four seasons at Ducati, during which time he took 23 of the factory's 24 race wins and claimed the 2007 world title.

The Australian's place has been taken by seven time MotoGP champion Valentino Rossi, who was only 15th fastest at the end of his first test on the Desmosedici last November, prompting a spate of technical changes.

Those changes are focussed around improving front-end feel, by making the bike more flexible. It's a development direction Stoner supports.

"[Increased flexibility] is something that we were trying to do last year," said Stoner.

"This is why we kept going back to the 42mm fork, because we got a lot more flex from the fork. It doesn't travel so well over the bumps, but we got a lot more feeling and feedback in the front.

"Because the carbon frame has so much stiffness, you have to find the flex somewhere.

"So I've noticed they've gone softer with the triple clamps, a bit more flex in the triple clamps. I don't know what they've done with the chassis, but they are also using the 42mm fork.

"For sure I think this is in the right direction.

"This is how I got more front feeling, but each rider is different, each riders' body position is different. Myself and Nicky's bike - even though Nicky thought the bike was similar last year - it was not. It was quite different.

"Each rider is going to be using a different setting. Just like this year. Myself, Andrea and Dani are, I'm sure, going to be using different settings because one setting doesn't feel right for another rider.

"So yeah, from what I can see they [Ducati] are going in the right direction, but until they start testing it's difficult to understand."

The Sepang test, the first official MotoGP track action of 2011, starts today (Tuesday).



Loading Comments...