Sepang test: Casey Stoner in pain but fastest

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Casey Stoner cast aside the numbing pain from his left wrist injury to surge to the top of the timesheets in Sepang today.

The Aussie is still recovering from major left wrist surgery in November when he needed a bone graft to repair a 2003 scaphoid injury.

Despite still being well short of full fitness, the Aussie managed to edge out former factory Ducati team-mate Loris Capirossi with a fastest time of 2.01.483.

That was 0.072s faster than Capirossi and 0.143s clear of reigning world champion Valentino Rossi.

“I haven’t been able to do a lot of laps today but I’m still struggling with the wrist. Right now my back and shoulders are hurting the most because I’m having too compensate with other parts of my body because of the wrist.

“I’m getting tired quite quickly and can’t do many laps and that is getting frustrating. It is a bit difficult to set up the bike when I can only do a couple of laps at a certain pace.

“I’m not setting up the bike to be fast at the moment. I’m just setting up a bike that it is easier for me to ride but at the same time to be fast and that’s not the best solution.”

Although he was quickest today, Stoner believes he has plenty more to show when he’s close to full fitness.

He still has severely restricted movement in the wrist and he can only ride with heavy strapping. He added: “For sure I can go faster. I’m not riding close to how I’m used to.

“I can’t brake how I like, and having to stop all of the time for a break means I can’t get any consistency going. 

“I can only do three or four laps together and then it is too long off the bike before I can go back out.”

Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt