Chaz Davies doubts that close friend Casey Stoner will return to racing once the reigning world champion retires from MotoGP at the end of the 2012.
Stoner stunned the racing world earlier this month in Le Mans when he announced 2012 will be his last and that he will not be renewing his contract with Honda’s official factory team.
Stoner will be just 27 when he hangs up his leathers but British rider Davies, who has been a close pal of the Australian’s for more than a decade when they raced together in the Aprilia Superteen 125cc series, doesn't believe there will be a future fairytale return.
The reigning World Supersport champion told MCN: “I don’t think he’ll make a comeback, but I could be wrong. I think he’s got so many things he wants to do in his life and they’ll be enough to take his mind off bike racing.
"He’s the most competitive guy I know and he has a list as long as his arm of things he wants to do, which he’s never had the opportunity to do while he’s been racing.
"He loves his house in Australia but he’s had to juggle his time and that’s meant that he doesn’t get to spend any quality time there.”
Davies said the big loss to the sport will be Stoner’s blistering speed, which saw him dominate the recent 800cc era at Ducati and Honda.
Davies added: “I genuinely believe he is the best. I’ve ridden with him a lot and even on a dirt tracker or a motocross bike he does stuff with ease that you just think ‘how did he do that?' There are obviously a lot of very talented riders out there but he is something special.
"At the end of the day he could have demanded however much money he wanted to race for another year, but he’s not interested. He stuck to his guns, so good on him.”
Stoner is back on track in Catalunya this weekend looking to cut Jorge Lorenzo’s eight-point lead in the standings after the Spaniard claimed an emphatic victory in a rain-lashed Le Mans race earlier this month.