Stoner looking good after Austria test

Retired double MotoGP champion Casey Stoner finished his two-day outing at the Austrian Red Bull Ring circuit third fastest in tests dominated by Ducati on Wednesday.

All top four quickest riders in the second testing session which began on Tuesday were from the Ducati Team with Andrea Iannone top with a time of 1m 23.240s followed by Andrea Dovizioso, Stoner and Hector Barbera respectively.  

At one stage the 30-year-old Stoner came off his bike, his first fall on a MotoGP bike in four years, but was not hurt and saw the funny side of it afterwards.

“To be honest, the corner before [the fall] was the first time I've pushed in years," said Stoner. I can go around and do the lap times I was doing. In every test, you get into a mode, a motion. No sense in taking any risks. I almost never run wide, let alone make a mistake. 

“It's the first time I've put a soft tyre on for many years. The corner before I had more chance of crashing probably, because I went in there and was ready for it. Everything went well. Then I went into the next corner and the front just closed on me. 

“For sure I had maybe a little bit more speed, but because we arrive on the limiter you can't really go faster into that corner. The limiter just arrives earlier because you have more grip. 

“So it was a little bit strange for me, but anyway clearly because of the soft tyre. We've been running the hard tyre all day for the last two days. So we probably had a little more weight coming from the rear onto the front and just wasn't ready for it.  

“It was just on the way to Turn 6. I didn't even get to maximum angle. It was disappointing but at the same time it's been good; four years without basically making a mistake – it had to come to an end sometime.” 

The Australian went on to add that he was generally impressed with the Ducati's handling and did not see any weaknesses.

“We're getting the bike to turn quite well. Braking stability seems quite good. Of course, we've got power but we're only reaching a little bit above 310 here. I don't really see a weakness at this point,” Stoner said.

“Maybe we could get the bike to turn a little bit better, but saying that we haven't got the latest chassis I tested [last time] at Misano which improved in that area.”

Lap times from Wednesday's final day of private MotoGP testing:

1. Andrea Iannone – Ducati Team (Desmosedici GP) 1m 23.240s
2. Andrea Dovizioso – Ducati Team (Desmosedici GP) 1' 23.680s
3. Casey Stoner – Ducati Test Rider (Desmosedici GP) 1' 23.865s
4. Hector Barbera – Avintia Racing (Desmosedici GP14.2)    1' 24.091s
5. Valentino Rossin – Movistar Yamaha MotoGP (YZR-M1) 1' 24.169s
6. Jorge Lorenzo – Movistar Yamaha MotoGP (YZR-M1) 1' 24.194s
7. Maverick Vinales – Team Suzuki Ecstar (GSX-RR) 1' 24.208s
8. Aleix Espargaro – Team Suzuki Ecstar (GSX-RR) 1' 24.335s
9. Scott Redding – Octo Pramac Yakhnich (Desmosedici GP15) 1' 24.375s
10. Yonny Hernandez – Aspar MotoGP Team (Desmosedici GP14.2) 1' 24.396s*
11. Cal Crutchlow – LCR Honda (RC213V) 1' 24.455s
12. Eugene Laverty – Aspar MotoGP Team (Desmosedici GP14.2) 1' 24.497s
13. Jack Miller – Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS (RC213V) 1' 24.555s
14. Danilo Petrucci – Octo Pramac Yakhnich (Desmosedici GP15) 1' 24.602s*
15. Tito Rabat – Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS (RC213V)    1' 24.760s
16. Michele Pirro – Avintia Racing (Desmosedici GP14.2)    1' 25.139s
17. Mika Kallio – KTM MotoGP Factory Racing (RC16) 1' 25.191s
18. Thomas Luthi – KTM MotoGP Factory Racing (RC16) 1' 25.705s

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