Only three rounds remain in the 2011 MotoGP Championship, beginning with the Australian Grand Prix at Phillip Island this weekend.
As Repsol Honda’s Casey Stoner enters Phillip Island with the points lead, the Australian can have a very special home race considering he can possibly clinch the 2011 MotoGP Championship three rounds early.
With 40 points over Yamaha Factory Racing’s Jorge Lorenzo, there are six ways Stoner could clinch the title early:
- If Stoner wins the race and Lorenzo does not finish on the podium
- If Stoner is second and Lorenzo finishes no higher than sixth
- If Stoner is third and Lorenzo finishes no higher than tenth
- If Stoner is fourth and Lorenzo finishes no higher than thirteenth
- If Stoner is fifth and Lorenzo finishes no higher than fifteenth
- If Stoner is sixth and Lorenzo fails to finish in the points
If Stoner completes this feat, he would add another title to his 2007 championship achieved while competing on the Ducati.
And there’s more that just may give Stoner that extra push; he also celebrates his 26th birthday this Sunday during the Phillip Island round of MotoGP.
Before this weekend’s race, here’s some additional preview stats released by MotoGP:
- 985.5 – Following his second place at the Japanese Grand Prix, Nico Terol career points’ total is 985.5. A podium finish at the Australian Grand prix would make him only the sixth rider to reach the milestone of 1000 career points in the 125cc class. The other riders to have done this are: Noboru Ueda, Kazuto Sakata, Angel Nieto, Fausto Gresini and Jorge Martinez.
- 400 – Dani Pedrosa’s win in Japan was the 400th Grand Prix win for Spanish riders across all solo classes. Spain are just the second nation to reach this milestone; the other nation to do this is Italy who have taken 733 GP wins.
- 97 – Dani Pedrosa’s win in Japan was the 97th time that he has stood on the podium in Grand Prix racing, all of which have been riding Honda machinery. This is just one less Grand Prix podium finish than Jim Redman who is the rider that currently holds the record for most podium finishes on motorcycle manufactured by Honda.
- 61 – Arriving at the Australian GP Honda have a 61-point lead in the MotoGP constructors championship. If any Honda rider finishes on the podium at Phillip Island it will guarantee that Honda win the constructors title for the first time since 2006.
- 57 – Casey Stoner’s third place finish in Japan was the 57th time he has stood on the podium in the MotoGP class. One more podium finish will take him to equal sixth with Max Biaggi in the all-time premier-class podium list. The only riders who have more podiums than Biaggi are; Valentino Rossi, Mick Doohan, Giacomo Agostini, Eddie Lawson and Wayne Rainey.
- 50 years – On the day of qualifying at the Australian Grand Prix it will be exactly 50 years to the day that Tom Phillis rode a Honda to the 125cc race win at the 1961 Argentine Grand Prix, clinching the world title in the process and becoming the first rider to win the 125cc world title riding Japanese machinery.
- 26 – MotoGP Championship leader Casey Stoner will celebrate his 26th birthday on race day at his home Grand Prix.
- 14 – Johann Zarco’s win at the Japanese Grand Prix was the first for Derbi since Marquez won in Portugal last year. The win ended a run of fourteen successive wins by Aprilia, which is the longest sequence of successive wins ever achieved by Aprilia in the 125cc class.
- 13 – Casey Stoner has finished on the podium at the last thirteen successive MotoGP races. In the sixty-three year history of motorcycle Grand Prix racing only four riders have finished on the podium at more than thirteen successive premier-class races: Valentino Rossi, Giacomo Agostini, Mick Doohan and Wayne Rainey.
- 10 – At the Japanese Grand Prix, Casey Stoner took his tenth pole position of the year. Only once has a rider taken more than ten poles in the premier-class in a single season – Mick Doohan started from pole in the 500cc class on twelve occasions in 1997.
- 7 – Marc Marquez and Stefan Bradl have each started from pole on seven occasions this year. These two riders have shared all of the poles in the Moto2 class so far in 2011.
- 6 – At Motegi, Johann Zarco became the sixth French rider to win a Grand Prix in the 125cc GP class, joining: Arnaud Vincent, Guy Bertin, Mike di Meglio, Jean Aureal and Jean-Claude Selini
- 4 – Phillip Island is one of just four current circuits where Rossi has not won during the 800cc era of MotoGP; the others are Silverstone, Aragon and Valencia.
- 4 – Casey Stoner has won for the last four years in Australia. A victory this year and he would equal Valentino Rossi’s record of five successive Australian GP wins from 2001 to 2005.
- 3 – Phillip Island is one of just three current circuits where Honda have not had a MotoGP win during the 800cc era. The others are Assen and Sepang.
- 2 – Phillip Island is one of just two current circuits where Yamaha have not had a MotoGP win during the 800cc era; the other is Aragon.