Casey Stoner can be big success at Honda, says Nicky Hayden

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Nicky Hayden has no doubt that Casey Stoner can help Honda become a major force in MotoGP again.

Stoner will leave Ducati at the end of 2010 to try and transform Honda’s factory RC212V into a consistent winner.

The Japanese factory has only won one premier class crown since 2003 and its RC212V contender has been easily eclipsed by the performance of Ducati and Yamaha in the 800c era.

HRC see Stoner as the man to revive its fortunes and former factory Honda rider Hayden, currently the Australian’s team-mate at Ducati, told MCN: “Casey can be fast on anything.

"Of all the people switching teams with the limited testing, I think it makes it hard on everybody but Casey. He could jump on that Honda and be unbelievably fast.”

Hayden said the crucial aspect for Stoner would be persuading some of his loyal crew to quit Ducati.

It is rumoured he wants to take key personnel like crew chief Cristian Gabarrini with him and Hayden said: “Ducati has been good for Casey and they treat him really good and try to help him a lot.

"Going over to Honda will be different. It depends if he takes his team with him because that would make it easier and make him feel good.

"Casey needs people around him to support him and who believe in him. But if he goes there and wins then it won’t be a problem.”

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Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt