Indy MotoGP: Casey Stoner unhappy with track surface
Casey Stoner reckons 70 per cent of the Indianapolis circuit will need to be resurfaced ahead of the 2011 MotoGP at the iconic American venue.
The 2007 world champion produced a promising start to the weekend when he logged the fastest time in opening practice with a 1.40.884 beating title favourite Jorge Lorenzo by over 0.2s.
But with Dorna and Indianapolis agreeing a new deal to bring MotoGP back in 2011, Stoner was critical at the condition of the circuit.
Several other riders joined Stoner in expressing concern about a lack of grip and several bumps on the circuit, which uses part of the famous Indy oval course.
The 24-year-old, who missed last year’s Indianapolis race with illness, said: “One of the bumpiest circuits I’ve ever ridden is Silverstone. This is a shorter circuit but it rivals it pretty well.
"It’s pretty bad. The surface definitely isn’t as world class as the venue. You go for a walk up to that last corner, you look at the entry point and looks like we’re going through someone’s garage.
"There’s concrete there and it’s not tarmac. And then all of sudden you come back into tarmac and then there’s a big seam there and it just doesn’t feel like a Grand Prix circuit at all.”
Stoner said the condition of the track had deteriorated considerably since he last rode at Indy in 2008.
He added: “I’d say it’s got worse than the other year on bumps. There are big cracks in the circuit and a lot of bumps. It’s not a circuit you can really just push the limit out of.
"It’s a circuit you just have to manage it by missing a bump to maybe go inside or outside. They need to resurface 70 per cent of the track, simple as that.
"I think there’s a lot of national circuits around the world that are a heck of lot better than this in terms of the surface. This is a fantastic facility. It’s great to come here with the name Indianapolis, but the track’s not doing it justice.”
Stoner clocked his best time using a new set of 2011 spec Ohlins front forks but he refused to get too carried away despite his blistering start.
Stoner has been fast on Friday numerous times in 2010 but has been unable to convert his early pace into a victory challenge come Sunday.
He said: “I guess today went okay. We started out testing quite well, we started out weekends well in the past, but unfortunately we’ve just not transferred it into a great result. So hopefully this weekend can be different.
"The new forks are very similar to the forks that we started out the beginning of the year. There are a few minor differences that maybe give us a little bit more feedback than what they did before and hopefully that can give us the difference.
"The forks we’ve been running since the beginning of the year have been fantastic, but on the particularly bumpy circuits it makes things a lot more difficult and we’re just trying to sort of solve those issues and hopefully these new forks can be the difference.”