With Casey Stoner winning his first race this season and Nicky Hayden finishing 3rd, Stoner is gaining ground in comparison to Dani Pedrosa and his 2nd place in the overall MotoGP World Standing.
The Australian was converting his pole position at the Spanish circuit of Aragón into a well-deserved win after overcoming an early battle with Jorge Lorenzo and a lot of pressure from Dani Pedrosa during the rest of the race.
Nicky Hayden was close to the leading drivers during the whole race, which enabled him to set up a thrilling final. After a magnificent last-lap-overtake on Jorge Lorenzo, Hayden reached his first top-three since Indianapolis last year. After reaching the team’s first podium double since 2007 and making some successful changes to their Desmosedici GP10 machines this weekend, we are hopeful that Stoner and Hayden are able to carry on their brilliant form until the end of the season.
Casey Stoner: “This win is a big relief, to be honest! We had the first race in Qatar wrapped up until I made a mistake and their have been other opportunities to win this year that I have missed out on through my own errors. We have had a lot of problems trying to find the final two or three tenths to run with Dani and Jorge this season but we changed the bike completely this weekend to adjust my position on it and got it working almost how we want it to. I had a little slip off in warm-up this morning which was a worry going into the race. I was staying away from every white line that I could over the first few laps but we were able to pick up the pace when we needed to and bring home a win. I want to thank the team, the factory and everybody who has stuck by me – I’m just sorry it took so long!”
Nicky Hayden: “It feels great to be back on the podium and I really enjoyed myself today. The bike has been working really well all weekend and in the race I was able to get a good start and stay with Jorge. There wasn’t really anywhere I could get a wheel in and over the last couple of laps he pushed hard to get away but I decided that fourth wasn’t good enough for me today. I did a bit of a backyard move in the chicane over there and managed to hold him off to the line. It’s nice to be on the podium, it has been a really good weekend for us and for the team, the sponsors and the supporters I’m glad we could be up here today. We’ll try to do it again a few more times before the season’s over!”
Vittoriano Guareschi, Team manager: “I am really happy for Casey, Nicky and all the team because today is payback for all their hard work. They have never backed off, even in the difficult moments. We came to a track that nobody had been to before but our bike worked well from the start. Both Nicky and Casey were fast in all conditions and today they produced a fantastic performance. Casey pushed very hard from the start to the finish but he always had the situation under control and even when he made a little mistake he recovered strongly and lap after lap he established an insurmountable lead over Dani. He really was brilliant today. Nicky was also fantastic because he kept up a strong pace throughout the race and never gave Lorenzo the chance to escape. He fought with him right to the end and came out with a podium. Congratulations to everybody but now we have to keep working as hard as ever to make sure we finish the season strongly.”