2011 Le Mans MotoGP Warm Up Result: Stoner Fastest In Incident-Filled Session

The normally relatively sedate session that is Warm Up turned positively fiery on Sunday morning at Le Mans. Literally, in the case of Jorge Lorenzo, whose Yamaha M1 caught fire after the reigning World Champion suffered a lowside on cold tires. Worse followed, when a resounding boom and large cloud of black smoke emerged from Lorenzo's Yamaha, strongly suggesting that his engine had just gone boom.

The fireworks continued with Casey Stoner, who had an on-track run-in with Pramac's Randy de Puniet. The Frenchman was trailing around waiting for a tow, and crossed onto the racing line to get a tow from Stoner just as the Australian approached. Stoner was forced to brake and move off line, and he slowed up to issue de Puniet with a punch while both were still riding. The pair were called to Race Direction after Warm Up was over, where Stoner was issued with a 5000 euro fine, and De Puniet warned after accepting that his actions at that point were wrong.

On track, it was once again Stoner who was fastest, by half a second over Marco Simoncelli. The cooler temperatures benefited the Ducatis, with Nicky Hayden 3rd fastest, and Valentino Rossi in 5th, just behind Dani Pedrosa.


Pos No. Rider Bike Time Diff Diff Previous
1 27 Casey STONER HONDA 1'34.221    
2 58 Marco SIMONCELLI HONDA 1'34.749 0.528 0.528
3 69 Nicky HAYDEN DUCATI 1'34.863 0.642 0.114
4 26 Dani PEDROSA HONDA 1'34.996 0.775 0.133
5 46 Valentino ROSSI DUCATI 1'35.007 0.786 0.011
6 4 Andrea DOVIZIOSO HONDA 1'35.070 0.849 0.063
7 35 Cal CRUTCHLOW YAMAHA 1'35.136 0.915 0.066
8 5 Colin EDWARDS YAMAHA 1'35.448 1.227 0.312
9 11 Ben SPIES YAMAHA 1'35.478 1.257 0.030
10 14 Randy DE PUNIET DUCATI 1'35.489 1.268 0.011
11 1 Jorge LORENZO YAMAHA 1'35.655 1.434 0.166
12 7 Hiroshi AOYAMA HONDA 1'36.352 2.131 0.697
13 17 Karel ABRAHAM DUCATI 1'36.799 2.578 0.447
14 19 Alvaro BAUTISTA SUZUKI 1'36.982 2.761 0.183
15 65 Loris CAPIROSSI DUCATI 1'37.246 3.025 0.264
16 8 Hector BARBERA DUCATI 1'37.900 3.679 0.654
17 24 Toni ELIAS HONDA 1'37.923 3.702 0.023


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I can imagine he was irritated by DePuniets riding, but Stoner definately needs to mellow down a bit. I hope his team will make this clear to him.
Bad news for Lorenzo. First engine shot, starting a race on his second bike. His sheer determination could still make for a pretty good result, though.

You guys need to not worry so much. It was a love tap. In Australia it's not unusual to punch someone in the arm, usually while calling them "retarded" or something similar. Maybe we play harder in Oz than some of you imagine.

Besides, Randy deserved it. What he did was just stupid.

I love a bit of fire between riders... makes for better viewing!!! Nobody can argue with that. GP has been a bit staid for the last few years, with the only unusual stuff going on being Lorenzo's poor impersonations of Rossi in his post victory celebrations. This is, so far, the best season in a long time in terms of the riders providing some interest.

Sometimes some of you forget that these guys, to a man, are seriously tough. They are fighters, and you can not expect them to not occasionally fire up a little.

But you can't complain about "dangerous riding" and be part of a campaign to introduce additional rules to prevent it

And then punch someone whilst they are riding.

You can't have it both ways - and it is behaviour such as this that is why Stoner struggles for popularity outside of his own country.

with riders pissing about on track, waiting for a tow. The potential for a major accident is rapidly increasing, with someone on a "flyer " navigating their way through a bunch of stragglers and finding himself up the rear of another.

The results will not be pretty ( remember Bubba Shobert accident at Laguna Seca )

Hmmm. We've heard this before. That you Aussies have your own little subculture. When was it? Oh yeah, when Casey got all sarcasmic on Vale.

I thought Casey's comment to Vale was funny. But this whole "we're Australian, you just don't understand us" thing, well....

No worries, mate. It was a joke. In Australia it's not unusual to stick someone with a knife and lift his wallet.

No worries, mate. It was a show of friendship. In Australia it's not unusual to kick someone on the shin and grab his beer.

No worries, mate. He was just being sarcastic. In Australia it's not unusual to tell someone you're going to hunt down his family if he doesn't give you a job.

I, too, like a good soap opera to go along with my racing. So, what was it? Fire between racers? If so, why downplay it with the "it's just an Aussie thing" card? A love tap? If so, where's the fire?

Either way, if there was punching to be done, better for it to happen offtrack, don't you think?

the legitimacy of Stoner's complaints about dangerous riding!

If he wanted to punch him, then he should have waited until he got back to the paddock.

I think it just proved what Stoner and Jorge etc are complaining about ..... dangerous behaviour by some of the riders not using their head. He should never hit other riders full stop, but what good would it do him to go to race direction? They don't do a bloody thing anyway. No wonder they are frustrated.

Punching him was stupid. Dangerous? You're joking, surely?

Some of you blokes really need to toughen up. There was nothing dangerous in what Stoner did. Even Randy doesn't think so.

Don't be so precious. Toughen up, and lets go racing!!!

in club racing we lean over and turn kill switchs off, sure that is dangerous? no one cares!

you have to try and get back return the same.

All I can say is, MotoGP fans these days are pussies : )

Seriously, neither were racing at 10/10ths when this incident occured. These guys stand up at 150km/h on their warm-down laps to wave to the crowd, do straight-length wheelies etc. and you really think this is classed as 'dangerous'? It would have happened on an in lap.

My guess is that the slow guys will be a bit more circumspect about stealing tows from Stoner after this, so he'll probably see it as $5k well spent if he doesn't have them screwing his lines up from now on.

I think the reason for this criss crossing of lines is rooted in the fact that Casey is used to drive on the left hand side on the public road and Randy is used to drive on the right hand side. 
Therefore it was normal for Randy to go to the right side to get out of the way instead of what Casey expected is normal to go to the left side. 

Typical publicity seeking from Casey who desperately wants to be like Rossi. Should have taken his helmet off or done it in private afterwards..

Really? Casey wants to be like Rossi? I have never seen Casey try to be flamboyant or make any effort to play to the camera or the crowd. Of all the MotoGP riders Casey is probably closest to being the anti-Rossi. Whether that is a good thing or a bad thing is in the eye of the beholder.

Stoner certainly does not like all the media attention.
He's there for the racing, becoming world champion, not becoming a star.
The same mentality than Pedrosa or Spies for example.

sorry guys - even david - but i am super disappointed MY humor-intended comments re: casey's punching were deleted!

what gives? why no explanation of exactly what i wrote was so offensive as to deserve deletion?

i thought the whole incident was hilarious - i thought this forum/site was at least a little mature & manly-enough to tolerate a little bit of colorful commentary?

i will happily self-edit if i know what the boundaries are; vale is correct - too many pussies & that includes the too-politically sensitive & correct posters.

sorry but its true.

i rarely comment & i can see why - blokey humor has no place in the rarified air of motogp's 'intelligent' fans.

i go back to riding my bike on the track - way more real & fun. :D

have a nice day y'all!

Comments are sometimes deleted not so much for the comments themselves as for the responses they might elecit. Your comments were on the edge. The responses probably wouldn't have been. I don't have time to carefully consider every comment, so I err on the side of caution. And I'm usually even less consistent than Race Direction for the same reason. I'm sorry, but that's the way it is.

repspect for reply - i understand now where you are coming from & will counsel myself accordingly! :)