Casey Stoner pulled double press conference duty ahead of his home Grand Prix at Phillip Island. As the Australian round of MotoGP is Stoner's home race, he gave an extra press conference for event sponsor IVECO, where he spoke to the Australian press. Among the subjects he talked about were racing at Phillip Island, riding Honda, the problems at Ducati and the prospect of his first child. Fortunately, the organizers of the Australian MotoGP round recorded the whole press conference, and posted it on their Youtube page for the fans to see. Here's what Stoner had to say:
The two-year contracts that all four of the MotoGP Aliens signed during 2010 have made for a very quiet silly season, with speculation on who will be riding where next season taking a very long time to get started.
After Yamaha's shock announcement that they will be pulling out of World Superbikes at the end of this season, their impressive rider pairing became World Superbike's hottest properties. Marco Melandri soon found a seat alongside Leon Haslam at BMW, but the fate of Eugene Laverty was still uncertain.
On the eve of the Australian round of MotoGP at Phillip Island comes official confirmation of Andrea Dovizioso's switch to the Monster Tech 3 Yamaha team. As reported on Friday, Dovizioso has penned a one-year deal with Tech 3, lining up alongside Cal Crutchlow for 2012. Below is the official press release:
Tech 3 Yamaha and Andrea Dovizioso reach agreement for 2012
The Monster Yamaha Tech 3 Team is delighted to announce it has reached an agreement with Andrea Dovizioso for the 2012 MotoGP World Championship.
One of the larger pieces still remaining of the 2012 MotoGP puzzle has just dropped into place. According to reports from both Speedweek and GPOne.com, Andrea Dovizioso has signed a one-year deal to race with Herve Poncharal's Monster Tech 3 Yamaha for 2012, despite having an offer to ride a factory-spec Honda RC213V in Lucio Cecchinello's LCR Honda squad.
With just over a month to go until the Moto3 class replaces the 125cc two-strokes, the Grand Prix Commission has finalized the technical regulations governing the Moto3 class - with one or two relatively minor exceptions.
Just 18 hours after Nicky Hayden returned home after the Japanese round of MotoGP at Motegi, the American got a call from Ducati to turn around and head back to Europe. Hayden had been called up to go test the Ducati Desmosedici GP12 at Jerez, after Valentino Rossi had been forced to pull out of the test. The first-lap crash Rossi suffered at Motegi has aggravated a very old (Assen 1995) injury to the little finger on his left hand, and the pain and swelling has made it too difficult for Rossi to test the bike properly.
If you've ever wanted to work on the technical side of motorcycle racing, now is your chance. FTR, the engineering company producing the FTR M211 Moto2 chassis, and reportedly building the aluminium chassis being raced by Valentino Rossi on the Ducati - though both Ducati and FTR continue to officially deny it - are looking to take on more people to help with their operation.
Carlos Checa is to help Ducati in developing the Desmosedici GP12 MotoGP machine. According to the leading Spanish website Motoworld.es, Checa told the post-race press conference at Magny-Cours that he had been asked by Ducati to help them with developing the GP12, as the factory has already used 7 of the available 8 extra days of testing the 1000cc machine using contracted riders Valentino Rossi and Nicky Hayden.
As they do after every round of MotoGP, Bridgestone today issued a press release discussing the way their tires performed at Motegi. It makes for interesting reading, Hirohide Hamashma explaining why the laptimes improved so much at Motegi from last year. The resurfacing done after the earthquake helped, but unlike Indianapolis, which was also resurfaced, the track has seen a lot of action since the resurfacing, putting a lot of rubber down on the track.
Here's the press release:
Japan Grand Prix debrief with Hirohide Hamashima
Marco Simoncelli spent an extra day at Motegi after the Japanese Grand Prix, testing the 2012 Honda RC213V which he is to race next season. His test was made possible after the Italian signed a contract last week to remain with the San Carlo Gresini team, on a contract with HRC and with full factory support. Simoncelli put in around 50 laps at the Japanese circuit, recording lap times similar to the times set during the previous three days aboard the 800cc RC212V.
It was a long and very full weekend of motorcycle racing, and to call it eventful would be one of the more obvious understatements of the year. In the 125c class, Johann Zarco finally got the win he has been chasing for so long, and did so in convincing style. In Moto2, Andrea Iannone produced the kind of display that everyone knows that he is capable of, but that he manages a little too sporadically.
If you've ever bought a program at a MotoGP race or marveled at the photos in motorcycle magazines, the chances are you have been admiring the work of Andrew Wheeler. Wheeler is one of the top photographers inside the MotoGP paddock, and his work has graced the pages of books, magazines and adverts all around the world. He is one of our favorite photographers inside motorcycle racing, matched only by our very own Scott Jones.
After Yamaha announced that they would cease factory support for their World Superbike team, the team's two riders, Marco Melandri and Eugene Laverty, became two of the hottest properties on the World Superbike rider market. Interest was especially keen for Melandri, the former MotoGP winner making a huge impact on his first foray into the World Superbike series, the Italian having switched to WSBK after leaving MotoGP at the end of 2010.