Casey Stoner misses first day in Sepang

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Reigning world champion Casey Stoner didn’t complete a lap on the opening day of 2012 MotoGP testing at the Sepang circuit in Malaysia today after he was sidelined by a back injury.

The Australian was completing a warm-up routine in his room in Honda’s pit garage this morning when he felt his back lock up, which relates to an old injury that has plagued Stoner previously.

He underwent physiotherapy to try and ease the issue but after consulting with HRC management it was decided he was better using today to rest so he could return to test the new RC213V 1000cc machine tomorrow (Tuesday).

The four laps completed on Stoner’s bike earlier today were done by test rider Kousuke Akiyoshi.

Stoner said: “I was stretching this morning for a good twenty minutes preparing to go out on track for the first time and then all of a sudden my back just locked up on me, I couldn't move or do anything. I had to call someone to come and help me move into a position that was less painful!

"Then I had some physio on it straight away trying to get it better for this afternoon but it's wasn't feeling good. I had some more physio after lunch but it still wasn't easing up, I felt I could have gone out on the bike in the afternoon but we all agreed it would probably make it worse for tomorrow.

"We have two more days testing here in Sepang, we know the track well and we are getting to know the bike, we just need some time to test the new parts we have here to give feedback to HRC.

"I think tomorrow the track conditions will be better and as long as my back improves overnight we should get back on schedule with our testing programme tomorrow".

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Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt