Former world champion Casey Stoner was a surprised and frustrated spectator at the start of MotoGP testing in Jerez today.
The Aussie, who is in the early stages of recovery from major surgery on his right wrist earlier this month, was in the paddock today before he heads home to Australia to continue the long recuperation period.
Stoner needed a bone graft on the wrist after an old scaphoid injury flared up in the final stages of the 2008 campaign, which the 23-year ended second behind a dominant Valentino Rossi.
Stoner spent the day out on track watching rivals like Rossi and Dani Pedrosa, while also analysing new team-mate Nicky Hayden’s early progress on the factory Ducati, which now features a carbon fibre chassis.
He was also on hand to discuss progress with Ducati’s influential technical guru Filippo Preziosi.
Stoner said “Yesterday the doctors told me that everything is going okay with my wrist, now I must wait and see. With the new cast they did yesterday I will be able to start some training on a pushbike so that is positive. In a few days I'll be heading back to Australia and it will be nice to be home for a while. It was a very strange feeling to be watching today instead of riding.
"This is probably the longest period I've gone without riding a bike at all since I was three years old! I'll definitely have a lot of motivation to get back on track in February. It is good to watch the bikes on track together with my engineers and then speak about it with Filippo (Preziosi) and Nicky, to share our feelings and see what we can do to improve our machine for next season."