Every once in a while, an athlete simply leaves the charts. He is in a place where no one else can go, and maybe no one else has ever been. I’m talking about Casey Stoner, and the time is now.
Last year, when Stoner completely blew everyone off the track and took the championship, the riders fueled a rumor that his Ducati was vastly superior to all the other machinery. This was bunk. It was Stoner who was vastly superior to his rivals. Even Rossi will admit that now.
Stoner started this year with a win in Qatar, but then he had his problems. Since Donington, Stoner has been untouchable, once again. I’m not talking about being a better rider than everyone else in the paddock. I’m talking about being a different kind of rider. When Valentino Rossi’s bike is working well, as it is now, you don’t see a rider step up and consistently lap 0.7 or 0.8 seconds a lap quicker than Rossi, but this is what Stoner has been doing lately. If Rossi is the greatest rider in history and he is in his prime (with his tax problems behind him), what does this say about Stoner? I say that Stoner is right now the fastest rider in the history of motorcycle roadracing, be it MotoGP or otherwise. We are witnessing perfection. We are witnessing history. Enjoy it while it lasts.