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Stoner is Back

After all the talk by all the pundits, and even ex-champions (Kevin Schwantz), Casey Stoner showed up to race at Phillip Island, and win. This was not the Casey Stoner we saw exhausted and red faced after struggling to make it onto the podium earlier this year. This was a fresh, powerful reincarnation of the Stoner we saw in prior years (when Rossi said he rode like a “god”).

Valentino Rossi had a ringside seat, once again. Following Stoner closely throughout the race on a bike that undoubtedly handled much better than Stoner’s, the two champions set a blistering pace not seen in a long time (if ever), breaking the pole lap time repeatedly as they distanced Dani Pedrosa, who could only shake his head in wonderment after the race.

Rossi was on fire, as well, but he couldn’t touch Stoner this weekend despite the fact that both rider’s left Honda’s number one rider more than 20 seconds behind them at the finish.

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MD Readers Respond:

  • Comment on your article:
    All your comments made seem quite valid: quote “Valentino Rossi had a ringside seat, once again. Following Stoner closely throughout the race on a bike that undoubtedly handled much better than Stoner’s” unquote.
    I would like to see however the difference in speed between the two bikes that everyone seems to have forgotten about!

    How much harder did Rossi have to ride to make up for that lack of speed and to stay with Stoner? The mention of a bike that handled better implies that even with that “advantage” Rossi could not catch Stoner.

    I think that info would then give a more complete picture of events.
    Thanks for the great site! Shaun

  • While I appreciate your article on Stoner, I’d like to point out a few things that are probably terribly obvious:
    • Stoner, in his classic interview fashion, showed no respect to Rossi. In one breath he complained about his bike and in the next talked about how happy he was with it. I can understand his delight in returning to winning ways, but he could learn a dose of humility from his elders.
    • Rossi, on the other hand, commended Stoner’s ride and ever so slightly in the Master’s way, suggested he could have challenged Stoner for the win. Come on, he was only four or five tenths back with a handful of laps left. It’s not like he was languishing seconds behind. Stoner certainly didn’t dominate him.
    • Rossi is staring down his NINTH world championship and it may not be his last.
    • Rossi shows class, respect and humility.
    • Rossi is king and he still has fun doing it.

    I try to like Stoner but I just can’t bring myself to do it.
    Thanks for a great website! Chris

  • The Stoner/Rossi photo is just amazing! Bud
  • You probably have heard from a few people by now on this article, particularly:

    “Rossi was on fire, as well, but he couldn’t touch Stoner this weekend”

    I suppose you just don’t get the fact that for Rossi it was the 7th Premier class World Title
    at stake vs. nothing for Stoner. Every time Stoner tried to up the pace, Rossi matched it,
    their gap staying under 0.5 sec for most laps. For many laps, it was at 0.2 sec.

    The only thing holding back Rossi was Rossi himself.

    Take a look at the motorcycling racing history and see how many riders have won 9
    world titles (7 premier class titles). Bonus Q, see if any of them is from Australia.

    No doubt Stoner provided a very entertaining ride on the Island. Sometimes I was
    wondering if there is McCoy hiding under that helmet! mantan

  • Let me see, Casy Stoner, takes a couple of months off to rest up and have psycho-therapy (and give the anxiolytics a chance to build to therapeutic serum levels) while the rest of the riders are debilitated further by the physical and mental beating of risking their lives at the highest level of motorcycle racing. VR cruises along less than 2 seconds behind ‘The Stoner’ for second place (in Stoner’s backyard) after VR’s only title threat hands him the championship by throwing it away in the first corner.

    And that means… “Stoner is back”…?????

    VR has never gone anywhere, and never will. He has beaten – no destroyed – everyone, on every bike. On a level playing field, all things equal…who is your money on???? John