Smashing Sepang: Casey Stoner Rocks MotoGP Sepang Winter Tests, Gears Up For Season
If the final winter MotoGP tests in Sepang (Malaysia) were a sign of things to come this season, the Big O is set to kick some serious arse.
Oakley star Casey Stoner raised eyebrows in late February as he absolutely owned the track on the final day of the second official test – rocking the two minute barrier with a shocking time of 1m 59.665s on just lap two of day three on his Honda RC212V.
Even crazier: the 2007 MotoGP Champ was playing around with different settings while posting the time – the fastest ever MotoGP time around the Sepang circuit.
“The test here has been very productive for us, we did a long run here today – almost race distance – and gathered some key information,” Casey said, rocking his Oakley-Ducati eyewear. “We had a good day comparing the chassis again and I’m happy we have made our decision on which one we’ll use for the season. The chassis we’ve chosen always behaves in the way we want it to, no matter what set-up we use, we are also able to adapt it fairly easily.”
One thing is certain. This Oakley rider is locked, loaded and focused.
“We also tried a lot of electronics with engine braking and found improvements in a few areas, and some losses in others so we need to rectify these,” Casey continued. “So when we get to Qatar in a few weeks we’ll be able to test different set-up’s at the same time and get more track time on it. I’m feeling more and more comfortable on the RC212V and I can’t wait to get to Qatar."
Fellow Oakley Rider Ben Spies was doing some work of his own. The American ripper emerged on top of all Yamaha factory riders with a fifth place finish.
“It was a productive test, we got through a lot,” said Ben, who points to the fact that there’s still plenty of work to do. “I had one small mistake but on the plus side we had a lot of stuff we accomplished so it’s all good. We still have some work to do obviously but we’re not too far off race pace. We need to figure out how to get the bike a little bit quicker for a few laps, definitely for qualifying and the beginning of the race.”
Just as focused and amping up for the coming season, Ben was also looking forward to stepping out of the hot pot that is the Malaysian climate.
“I’m looking forward to a few days rest now in cooler temperatures at home before Qatar! The team have been awesome again, I’m really pleased with how we’re working together.”