News 24 Aug 2010

MotoGP: Stoner confident new fork will boost Indy chances

Aussie Casey Stoner will be hoping to convert his podium run to a victory in the USA on Sunday.

Aussie Casey Stoner will be hoping to convert his podium run to a victory in the USA on Sunday.

Australia’s 2007 MotoGP World Champion Casey Stoner will enter this weekend’s Indianapolis round of this year’s title chase hopeful that a new Ohlins fork could be the key to boost him to his first win of the season on Sunday.

Stoner is looking forward to racing at Indy for the first time since he took fourth place in the rain-interrupted inaugural race in 2008, forced to sit out last year’s round due to health problems.

Both Stoner and the Ducati Team are keen to confirm whether technical updates introduced at the post-race test at Brno have a positive effect at the famous Brickyard circuit, looking to match the dominant Yamaha YZR-M1 of series leader Jorge Lorenzo.

“I’m really looking forward to going back to Indy because it’s a circuit where we were in good shape in 2008 despite the crazy weather,” Stoner said. “Unfortunately I wasn’t able to race last year but hopefully this time around we can make the most of the work we did in the Brno test, even though we didn’t have much time.

“We’ll start out on Friday with the new front fork because our first impressions of it were good although we still have to decide whether we’ll use it for the race. We’ll also try some settings on the rear that we managed to get a few laps on at Brno but that also need checking out.”

Ducati Team manager Vittoriano Guareschi is also confident the team can make inroads with the Desmosedici GP10 at Indy.

“We go to Indy with some things to try that we hope can give Casey those two tenths he’s missing,” the Italian commented. “Over the past few months he’s been happy with the engine and the handling of the GP10 but never really able to get a good feeling for the front.

“The new fork we tried in the Czech Republic seems to have given him a little confidence so we’ll fit it to one of his two bikes on Friday afternoon. If his feeling is as good as it was at Brno we’ll use it in the race.”

Stoner enters the weekend with the momentum of five consecutive podium finishes, currently sitting third in the standings behind Lorenzo and Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa.