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Stoner continues superb rookie year with fourth

Stoner continues superb rookie year with fourth

Stoner continues superb rookie year with fourth

Casey Stoner continued his superb rookie year with a dramatic photo-finish with fellow Honda rookie Dani Pedrosa in Holland. Stoner missed third place on the podium by just three hundredths of second after a close last lap battle with Pedrosa.

After starting twelfth Stoner moved ahead of the Spaniard into fifth position on lap seven. By mid-race Pedrosa went past with Stoner pacing himself in the Repsol Honda rider's slipstream, the pair running in fourth and fifth positions by lap 20. The final lap saw Stoner ahead of Pedrosa in turn one with the Spaniard squeezing back past Stoner just two corners from the finish. Race leader Colin Edwards crashed at the final chicane, handing Pedrosa third place by a narrow margin.

Stoner also set the second fastest race lap, just 0.1s slower than winner Nicky Hayden.

"I made a good start but got blocked by another rider and everyone went around the outside of me in turn one. But I had a good pace going and got into fifth and when Dani came past I was happy to sit in behind him for a few laps. Dani was a little slower than me but it was difficult to pass, I was losing some rear grip in the left-handers. Then I made a mistake on the final lap which allowed Dani to get ahead and while I'm not happy about that, the positive is that again today I had good race package was racing for the podium."

MotoGP, 2006, A-STYLE TT ASSEN, Casey Stoner

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