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Podiums for Stoner and Dovizioso, Aoyama eighth

Podiums for Stoner and Dovizioso, Aoyama eighth

The Repsol Honda team sealed another double podium, the fifth of the season in seven races and as ever, the weather at the Dutch TT complicated matters with very changeable conditions.

Casey Stoner and Andrea Dovizioso finished second and third respectively, after both fell on Friday in free practice. Casey, battered and bruised from Friday’s accident, never felt totally comfortable with his set up all weekend, and was very relieved to score some important Championship points. Andrea also still a little sore, experienced a tyre issue in the race which affected his ability to stay with Casey, who eventually built up a gap between the two riders.

Hiroshi Aoyama, despite having a sharp pain in the back after also falling in Friday’s 90-minute practice session, finished in a creditable eighth position in his first experience on the Honda RC212V factory machine.

Stoner, with six podium finishes in seven races, extended his lead in the MotoGP World Championship to 28 points ahead of Jorge Lorenzo, whilst Dovizioso, confirmed his third position in the Championship Standings.

After missing the past three Grands Prix, Dani Pedrosa will rejoin his team mates and make a welcome return to the Repsol Honda Team at Mugello next week.

Casey Stoner:
"Today we would have liked to challenge for the win but the way this weekend has gone for us I'm really very happy for a podium finish and to take some valuable points. Yesterday we weren't happy with the bike the set up, so today we made some changes and tried to get some more feeling, but unfortunately in the warm up we didn't get a proper chance to try it, which meant we started the race with a set up we didn't really know. After the crash yesterday I'm a little bit sore, in the middle part of the race I started to have some problems in the left hand corners with the shoulder but in general we knew we didn't really have the pace to stay with Ben. I tried everything possible to catch him, but he was able to retain the advantage and start to pull some more, so my congratulations to Ben, he rode a great race, but for us it was just important to get points today.”

Andrea Dovizioso:
“I’m really happy with today’s podium. It’s a good result for the Championship and also it has come after a complicated race weekend. The track conditions were tough. When we were on the grid, the weather was still unpredictable and the track was not completely dry, so we went for a safe tyre selection, choosing the soft front tyre. This choice influenced my race because when I tried to stay with Casey, I was losing the front and I couldn’t push harder. This is my only disappointment today. Then after 15 laps, a strange vibration on the rear began. It was very annoying and I couldn’t understand what it was. As I had a good margin from Valentino, I rode more carefully to secure the third position. After the race we saw that the front tyre had some issues, which Bridgestone will analyse. Anyway, this second podium in a row and the third so far, shows that in the important moment we are there. Moreover, with today’s result we have reduced the gap from Jorge and consolidated third position in the Championship. I look forward to Mugello next week, the track is fantastic and the spectators are amazing.”

Hiroshi Aoyama:
"First of all I'd like to thank the whole Repsol Honda Team and HRC, and I'm sorry for the accident yesterday! It was quite a tough weekend due to the conditions and situation, not ideal to go racing in but we couldn't do anything about this. We tried our best during this short space of time and I'm happy I enjoyed the race even if in a lot of pain after yesterday's crash. In the race it was quite tough, but from mid-race I was able to improve lap by lap and achieve good consistency. The team did a very good job so thanks again to them as I have had a very nice and special experience riding Dani's bike. This experience has taught me things and made me a better rider, I hope one day I can return to this team. Dani will return next race and I am sure he will be happy to be back on his bike!”

MotoGP, 2011, IVECO TT ASSEN, Hiroshi Aoyama, Casey Stoner, Andrea Dovizioso, Repsol Honda Team

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