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Stoner happy with brave podium

Stoner happy with brave podium

Ducati’s Casey Stoner almost collapsed with exhaustion after the Barcelona contest, having gone into the sixth race of the year feeling unwell and emerging in third place.

Riding 25 laps of the Circuit de Catalunya in 40°C temperatures in a MotoGP race is enough to test the fitness off the toughest of athletes even when at 100%, so Casey Stoner did remarkably well on Sunday to secure his fourth podium of the 2009 season having gone into battle feeling unwell.

The Australian former World Champion started to feel sick on Saturday afternoon and was extremely tired just after nine laps in Sunday morning’s warmup session, leaving him unsure whether he would even be able to complete the race.

Having remarkably stayed in front of Andrea Dovizioso to keep third place by just a 0.052s gap, Stoner explained what he had gone through and attributed the result to the strength of his Ducati Desmosedici race package, having almost collapsed before he stepped up onto the podium.

“I’m not sure how I did it because half way through the race I nearly gave up. I was very close to pulling into the pits and nothing felt right,” Stoner stated. “The bike was working really well but I just wasn’t able to keep the pace, I just couldn’t brake properly as I was nearly falling onto the front of the bike.”

He continued, “My legs and my stomach were cramping and so I decided to just relax for a few laps to see if we could finish in the top ten or something similar. The bike was so good that I was able to just keep doing consistent lap times to hold Andrea behind me, and I ended up on the podium which is really important for the championship.”

The factory Ducati man is tied on 106 points at the top of the standings with Valentino Rossi and Jorge Lorenzo, with the next round taking place at Assen – where Stoner was victorious in 2008.

MotoGP, 2009, GRAN PREMI CINZANO DE CATALUNYA, Casey Stoner, Ducati Marlboro Team

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