Ducati Marlboro’s Casey Stoner starts Sunday’s fourth MotoGP race of the year in third place on the Le Mans grid, but the former World Champion felt he had the pace to beat Dani Pedrosa and Jorge Lorenzo who finished marginally in front of him.
3rd – Caset Stoner Speaks…
Describing how his qualifying session had gone, after missing pole by 0.075s, the Australian stated, “When we went out on the softer tyres for qualifying we did a pretty good lap time and I felt sure I could improve on it with my second tyre, but unfortunately I got held up by Chris Vermeulen on my fast lap because I started too close to him and then I got stuck behind him. So I tried again after a couple of laps but my tyres were pretty much destroyed and although I improved my time it wasn’t enough.”
Summarising his weekend so far in general he stated, “On Friday afternoon and Saturday morning we struggled to get good track time, but everyone is in the same position. Of course your mind is focused on getting a good qualifying position because it is quite important at this circuit, but at the same time you need to use your dry practice time to get a good race set-up.”
Looking ahead to the race on Sunday Stoner is hoping the rain does not return and believes all the top five qualifiers should be in contention for victory. He added, “It looks like 50/50, it could be wet, could be dry. It would be nice to think we could have another dry race, as there is less pressure and it is more fun. We look close in terms of lap times but I think there are only five of us who are close enough to win the race. If it is dry I expect a battle at front.”