Stoner poised to claim MotoGP crown - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Stoner poised to claim MotoGP crown

31/08/2007 06:08:19 AM Comments (0)

Australia's Casey Stoner can all but wrap up the world title with victory in the new San Marino MotoGP on Sunday.

The Ducati rider has a 60 point lead over second-placed Valentino Rossi with six races left.

The only rider to have missed out on a world title with such a lead was Mick Doohan, who led by 65 points with five races left in 1992 before injury struck.

However, Stoner is among a number of riders to have criticised this weekend's track at Misano as too bumpy.

The track, which last hosted premier class racing in 1993, is actually near Rimini in Italy and not in San Marino but the name is used to distinguish the new race from the Italian MotoGP.

Formula One used to have an Italian and San Marino Grand Prix but the San Marino race at Imola has been ditched this year. In contrast, MotoGP has added a second Italian race this season to reap the benefits of a Rossi-obsessed nation.

Rossi has won the last six Italian Moto GPs in a row at Mugello but the San Marino race is more of homecoming as Misano is close to the town of Tavullia where he grew up.

"I want to win to give some joy to my fans," the five-times MotoGP champion said in a statement.

Rossi has had problems with tyres for much of the season.

"We are in the process of finding the miracle tyres that we have been searching for. We have gathered some information that we hope will be useful to Michelin," the 28-year-old added.

The Yamaha rider, who lives in Britain, has also been stung by an Italian tax evasion probe which has affected his public image in his birth country. He denies wrongdoing.

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