Casey Stoner, one of the most naturally talented riders ever seen in MotoGP, hopes to become more involved in the sport in future and 'give back' some of the knowledge and expertise gained during a stellar grand prix career.

"I still think I have a lot to give the sport," said Stoner, during an interview for the Australian Grand Prix website conducted by countryman and former MotoGP rival Chris Vermeulen.

"I'm certainly not going to go in and make solutions etc, but I know what needs to be done to win races and that I have something to give back in the future."

After retiring with two MotoGP titles and 38 race victories at the end of 2012, Stoner later returned to both his former factories as a test rider; initially at Honda and then Ducati.

But the Ducati agreement was allowed to expire during 2018, with Stoner - who first rode a motorcycle aged 3 and was racing at 4 - subsequently revealing a battle with chronic fatigue late last year.

Vermeulen asked Stoner if he would be interested in becoming a MotoGP team manager or mentor in future, prompting Stoner to explain why he had left the previous test-riding roles:

"As you know we had a certain role there with Ducati. I tried with Honda at the beginning but kind of got squeezed out a little bit by the young gun coming through, didn't want me around!" Stoner smiled.

"So, we tried this with Ducati as well, but couldn't come to an agreement on terms, things like this, so we had to step aside from that role. I didn't really feel like I could give to the team what I wanted to.

"I knew what the riders wanted, we worked really well together, but unfortunately riders don't always get to say. As you know, with some manufacturers they see data and they see what they believe is the correct direction and it doesn't always sit well with the riders.

"So, it was just a constant slog, a constant fight trying to get the right things changed on the bike to move forward. And it was hard work. Being in Australia and not able to be over there as well, having more meetings and discussions and pushing them harder was a little bit difficult.

"So I sort of stepped back from that role, but I still think I have a lot to give the sport. I still think there are certain aspects where I think outside of the box maybe and have a different view of things that can help in some ways.

"I'm certainly not going to go in and make solutions etc but I know what needs to be done to win races and that I have something to give back in the future.

"At the same time, I might have to wait until this chronic fatigue passes so I can actually give a little more than I currently can. I'm currently trying to put all my efforts into this and my family.

"But to be honest, yeah, I would like to be involved a little bit more and let's see what the future holds for MotoGP."

While Stoner may have left Ducati for a second time, an Australian will be riding in Official Team colours next season following the newly-announced deal for Jack Miller.

Stoner feels that Miller 'fully deserves' the factory chance after making upward progress in recent years.

"Jack's really matured these past years and I've been impressed with the way he's sort of structured himself and moving forwards. You can see it in his results, in the way he works, his focus, his motivation," Stoner said.

"Everything seems to be growing year-by-year and his results have been really consistent over these last years.

"I'd still like to see him maybe work a little better with the harder tyres, because sometimes it is really good when you're on the fence going between a soft option and a hard option.

"It's good knowing that you can run that harder tyre, so working with the engineers trying to get the bike to work a little better with the hard tyres so you can go into a race not worrying about that end-of-race drop-off, especially with what seems to happen with the current tyres.

"I think Jacks going to do a great job there. I think Ducati have made the right choice, but it's just which Ducati rider is going to be there as his team-mate I suppose. It might be obvious for some or there might be a big shock coming, we really don't know.

"But I think it's fantastic that Jack has got his opportunity. He fully deserves it… One thing he does have to understand is that that factory bike isn't going to be a massive step above what he's already riding.

"That's one thing with Ducati, there's not a whole lot of difference between their satellite and factory bikes. But what will be different is the support he is going to get. They are going to be there listening to every word he says, and the development will maybe move in the direction he wants, which is really good to see.

"I'm going to enjoy seeing what he can do next year… I'm really happy for Jack and Australia to have another guy on a factory bike."

And does Stoner ever think of what might have been, had he not retired at the age of just 27?

"Yes and no," he replied. "Not so much what would or wouldn't have happened. I think without a doubt I would have challenged for more championships, whether I'd have won another one I don't know. That's up for debate. It's something we'll never know, I'll never know.

"I think sometimes I've had little wishes to come back, not necessarily for the racing aspect, but I loved working with my team. l know it sounds stupid, but I loved practice, when the weather was alright and the bike was working great.

"I also loved qualifying sessions, that little bit of pressure to get everything right for a lap. I really enjoyed when I got the best out of the bike. That was good fun.

"Racing was not necessarily the most enjoyable part because you put all this effort into 20-30 laps and you can't make a mistake. And as you know Chris, it's that easy to make a mistake on those bikes, especially when you are pushing that hard.

"One little twitch of the finger on the brake at the wrong moment and you are down. Hitting a little bump and bottoming the fork at the wrong moment and you are down. Missing your braking point by just that much and running wide and it’s race over.

"There are so many things to it and so much pressure, that it was always more of a relief to me when I finished the race, whether I'd won, lost or had a great race. Even if I finished off the podium, if I was really happy with my race, I'd done my job.

"That aspect I didn’t really miss, but I did miss working with the team and pulling out as good a lap time as you could do in qualifying."

Honda had been planning to place Marc Marquez alongside Stoner for his rookie 2013 season, but instead retained Dani Pedrosa when the Australian retired.

Marquez has won the MotoGP title in all but one of the seven seasons since.

 

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