Determined Stoner takes first win at Estoril
Repsol Honda’s Casey Stoner has now won a MotoGP race at every circuit on the calendar after the Australian took his second successive victory in a strong performance at Estoril.
Jorge Lorenzo on the Yamaha Factory Racing M1 put Stoner under pressure throughout the entire race but ultimately could not find a way past the defending champion. Dani Pedrosa completed the podium on the second Repsol Honda RC213V while for the second race in a row, Power Electronics Aspar’s Aleix Espargaro was the first CRT rider across the finish line in 12th place, just ahead of teammate Randy de Puniet.
As track conditions for the race were warm, but not hot at around the mid-35°C mark, all riders on the grid chose to run the softer rear slick, which at Estoril is the medium compound, in combination with the medium compound front slick tyre. Of the twenty riders that selected the medium front slick, thirteen opted for the compound in the new specification front slick tyre including top-five finishers Jorge Lorenzo and Monster Tech3 Yamaha riders Andrea Dovizioso and Cal Crutchlow.
Casey Stoner now leads Jorge Lorenzo by one point in the MotoGP standings, with Dani Pedrosa 14 points adrift in third place overall.
Hiroshi Yamada - Manager, Bridgestone Motorsport Department
“I’d like extend my congratulations to Casey Stoner on his first MotoGP win at this circuit. Track conditions were better today and our tyres performed very well with Jorge Lorenzo setting a new lap record using a combination of the medium compound rear slick and new specification front slick tyre, also in the medium compound. The winning race time was fourteen seconds quicker than last year with the top three riders pushing each other hard at a very fast and consistent pace right up to the checkered flag.
“The whole race weekend for us was very constructive and I am happy how our 2012 specification tyres performed at this demanding circuit. Now we are focused on assisting teams at tomorrow’s post-race test and preparing for the next race at Le Mans in two weeks time.”
Shinji Aoki - Manager, Bridgestone Motorsport Tyre Development Department
“Race conditions today were similar to those we had in qualifying yesterday and as expected all the riders selected the combination of the softer rear slick and the harder front slick. This combination gave riders the best mix of rear grip and front-end feel. I am pleased with the performance of our 2012 specification tyres here at Estoril and in particular, the positive feedback we have received on our new specification front tyre at the last two races shows it performs very well in a wide range of conditions.”
Casey Stoner, Repsol Honda – Race Winner
“In general we’ve been pretty happy this weekend, though for the race I had to keep up the pace as best I could as my pit-board showed that Jorge was always there behind me. In the middle of the race I tried a few changes to the map settings and slightly changed the way I rode which helped things and in the end we had enough in the bag to hold on for the win.”