Nicky Hayden praises ‘special talent’ Casey Stoner

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Nicky Hayden has heaped praise on factory Ducati team-mate Casey Stoner ahead of the 2010 MotoGP world championship.

Ever since the Aussie joined Ducati in 2007, he has single-handedly turned the Bologna factory into a major force in MotoGP.

But his stunning success, which has seen the 24-year-old win 20 races since the beginning of 2007, has also seen Ducati labelled as a one-rider bike, with no other rider able to get close to emulating Stoner’s incredible success.

Kentucky rider Hayden though doesn’t believe the Desmosedici favours Stoner.

The 2006 world champion said: “It’s a great match. Casey finds the limit of this bike and I think some of his strong points to be able to so fast, so quick suits this bike.

“But really, Casey’s a special talent. I don’t think it’s so much other than just the bike suits his style. Sure, it’s a good package. But I think Casey would be just as fast on any bike. The bike is a little bit special.

“I’m not going to try to deny that fact. It has some things that make it hard to get the most out of it. But the limit is so high and I think he just finds it.

“The bike is, as other guys at times have shown, really strong. But he’s the guy that can do it week in and week out and that is what really sets him apart.”

Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt