The 2011 MotoGP season has not been typical of Valentino Rossi, from the first pre-season tests up to the opening round in Qatar two weeks ago.
The Italian could hardly break the top 10 in pre-season test sessions, and struggled for a seventh-place finish at Losail International Circuit.
One rider completed dominated at Losail International Circuit for the opening round of the 2011 MotoGP Championship: Casey Stoner.
Aboard the Repsol Honda RC212V, Stoner was quickest in all three free practice sessions, and then stormed to the pole at Qatar. This immediately made him the MotoGP favorite for Sunday’s race.
The 2011 MotoGP season started this weekend with the first race in Qatar, which is unique because it is run in the desert and at night.
Since the MotoGP test on 13-14 March conditions were windy which meant a lot of sand was blown onto the circuit, making it slippery and leading to graining.
From the looks of things after the Moto2 free practice sessions in Qatar, Marc Marquez was on his way to a great debut performance in Moto2.
The 18-year-old Spaniard then qualified his Team Catalunya Caixa Repsol machine second on the grid, 0.207 of a second behind Stephan Bradl.
Casey Stoner continued his strong pre-season form to take a clear victory today in Qatar for the Repsol Honda Team, using the harder option front and rear Bridgestone slicks to finish over three seconds ahead of the field and set the fastest lap of the race.
Stefan Bradl (Viessmann Kiefer Racing) opened his season in style by taking the second Moto2 win of his career at Losail International Circuit, Qatar, having started from pole position for the first time in his GP tenure.
The German Moto2 rider led from the start of the race and eventually won by a large margin of 4.330s.
MotoGP Round 1
MotoGP fans have sat silent for 133 days since Valencia wrapped up the 2010 Championship. But in 22 intense laps, that wait has already transformed into the first points being awarded after the season-opener at Losail International Circuit Sunday.