What about Casey Stoner’s retirement, and what you thought of his racing in his final year?
Nakamoto: Casey told us (in 2011) that he wanted to retire. It was after he won the Australian GP to secure the championship. He still had one more year to run on his contract with us, so he said he would ride for Honda in 2012, but it was quite a shock to hear he wanted to retire.
Ever since the season began, he kept saying he wanted to make his decision public. Naturally, we really wanted him to continue with us and repeatedly tried to persuade him to reconsider, but Casey’s mind was made up.
It was at Round Four in France that he finally got his way and held a press conference to announce his plans. I was OK with that, since I thought it would motivate him to win his final championship and retire in a blaze of glory.
When Casey has confidence in himself and takes each race steadily, there is no other rider who can beat his speed. But then we had that crash in the final lap of Round Eight in Germany, and all our plans went out the window.
In that race, he didn’t even need to win—finishing behind Dani would have been good enough. It was impatience that led to his crash and a no-point race result. And this led to his behavior at the following GP in Italy—he couldn’t calm down and get his set-up done properly, and rode a poor race to finish eighth which knocked him right back in the championship points table.
If only he had finished properly in Germany, he would likely have ridden as steadily as usual in the following races and possibly would have escaped injury in Round 11 at Indianapolis.
When it came to choosing his bike too, while Dani was full of praise for the new chassis, Casey reckoned it wasn’t much different and stuck with the older one.
It wasn’t just Dani—Stefan liked the new chassis and used it for the final GP at Valencia, and when Alvaro tried it in the post-season test he also declared it excellent.
Now that I think on it, pushing Casey to test the new bike after the Italy GP was maybe a mistake. I guess I should have waited a bit longer until he had regained his composure. If I’d waited, he might have been able to see things clearer and appreciate the quality of new bike.
Dani averages 2.5 wins a season since 2006..taking out 2012.
2012 he won 7 races..6 of them AFTER he took the new frame Stoner rejected.
There is not one tangible fact anywhere at all that backs up anyone's claim that Stoner was wrong not to use the new chassis...says Bulto
No surprises there then..