Stoner makes it six in a row at Phillip Island
Repsol Honda’s Casey Stoner took his sixth consecutive victory at Phillip Island in a dominating display as Yamaha Factory Racing’s Jorge Lorenzo claimed the 2012 MotoGP championship after finishing second in the Australian Grand Prix.
Starting on pole for his last home Grand Prix, Stoner didn’t get the best of starts but inherited the race lead after his teammate Dani Pedrosa suffered an unfortunate low-speed crash at Honda Hairpin on lap two that ended his title aspirations. From that point on Stoner built a comfortable lead and took the checkered flag 9.223 seconds ahead of a jubilant Lorenzo, while Monster Yamaha Tech 3’s Cal Crutchlow stepped up to the podium for the second time this year after finishing in third place. Power Electronics Aspar’s Aleix Espargaro again took the honours among the CRT riders, narrowly beating teammate Randy de Puniet to tenth place by just 0.043 seconds.
Track conditions for today’s race were the best they were all weekend, though low ambient temperatures and a persistent sea breeze kept track temperatures in the low 30°C range. The moderate track temperature for the race made softer option slicks the preferred choice, with all riders selecting the soft compound front slick, while every rider except LCR Honda’s Stefan Bradl selected the softer rear option – the medium compound slick.
Shinji Aoki – Manager, Bridgestone Motorsport Tyre Development Department
“The weather was better today but still quite cool meaning that softer compound slicks were preferred by almost every rider for the race. Morning Warm Up gave some riders the opportunity to test the harder slick options both front and rear, but it was still too cool for these options to work effectively, especially for the front tyre. Track temperatures increased slightly in the afternoon, though only one rider selected the harder rear slick for the race. Considering the cool, unpredictable weather we’ve had at Phillip Island I am satisfied with tyre performance as there were no complaints about warm-up performance which is always a major consideration at this circuit.”
Casey Stoner, Repsol Honda – Race Winner
“It’s been a fantastic build up and it was very important for me to win a race before I retired and to do it at my home Grand Prix was a fairy tale. The fans have been amazing, I’ve never seen Cowes so busy and I know a big part of that is because of this being my last race here so it gives me a great feeling and pride as an Aussie to go out there and win today.”