Casey Stoner 3rd in Sepang as Repsol Honda clinch 2012 Team Championship
The Repsol Honda Team returned to full power at the Malaysian Grand Prix with another superb win for Dani Pedrosa and Casey Stoner’s return to the podium in third position.
The treacherous conditions today in Sepang caused the race to be cancelled with six laps remaining due to heavy tropical rain. Dani was 6.4 seconds ahead of Jorge Lorenzo and Casey was chasing him for second place when the red flag was displayed and prevented him progressing any further.
Today, Dani celebrated his first victory in wet conditions, his sixth of the 2012 season and the 44th in his Grand Prix career, equaling Lorenzo and Casey in the ranking of all time winners. It’s the first time that Dani has won three races in a row in the premier class and he is the first Spanish rider ever to win in Malaysia in MotoGP. He has also beaten his record of 13 podiums in a season and continues to chase the title with two races remaining.
Casey returned to the podium -his sixth of the season- in only his second race back after injury forced him to miss three races since Indianapolis. The 2011 World Champion was cautious and therefore unable match the pace of Dani and Jorge in the early laps, but his confidence grew and he began to find his rhythm as the race progressed and was closing the gap to Lorenzo when the race was stopped.
With today’s double podium, the 7th of the season, the Repsol Honda Team have clinched the 2012 Team Championship with two races remaining. The combined points tally of 537 has secured the title with the second place team 119 behind and a maximum 90 points on offer in the last two races. The Repsol Honda riders have had an impressive season to date with Dani taking six 1st’s, four 2nd’s, four 3rd’s and a 4th place.
Casey, who missed three races due to injury has so far scored four 1st’s, one 2nd, three 3rd’s, two 4th’s, one 5th and an 8th place. Replacement rider Jonathan Rea also added to the points with an 8th and 7th position respectively, when filling in for Casey in Misano and Aragon GP’s.
CASEY STONER – 3rd – World Championship Standing: 3rd with 213 points
“At the start of the race, I would have been very happy for a podium. I was considering not taking part in the rain at all as the risks were very high – if I had come off the bike again and hit my ankle, it would have been game over for the rest of the season. As the race progressed I slowly got my confidence back and I was working on different things as I hadn’t ridden in the wet in quite some time. I slowly began to catch the front two but unfortunately ran out of time as the red flagged the race. In a lot of ways I’m disappointed, but I’m happy with the points haul we took today and another podium”.
Source: Repsol Honda Team