Stoner Makes a Return for Ducati Barcelona Test

Casey Stoner and Ducati test rider Casey Stoner is set to make another return atop the Italian marque’s bike during a private test in Barcelona.

When you’ve been let down by the rest, call in the best. Alright, so that’s being a little glib toward the Ducati riders – particularly after Lorenzo snagged his first podium of 2017 at Jerez this last weekend, but one would be stupid to assume that Stoner is being kept on the test rider list just for kicks. While the Australian has repeatedly stated that he has no interest in racing again, his prowess atop the Desmosdeci is undeniable.

KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA - FEBRUARY 01: Casey Stoner of Australia and Ducati Team heads down a straight during the MotoGP Tests In Sepang at Sepang Circuit on February 1, 2017 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. (Photo by Mirco Lazzari gp/Getty Images)
KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA – FEBRUARY 01: Casey Stoner of Australia and Ducati Team heads down a straight during the MotoGP Tests In Sepang at Sepang Circuit on February 1, 2017 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. (Photo by Mirco Lazzari gp/Getty Images)

Stoner will be attending a private test that Ducati will be holding at Barcelona, giving the test rider another shot to top the timesheets once again as he did in Sepang earlier this year. Stoner will split his time atop the Ducati with current Ducati mainstays Jorge Lorenzo and Andrea Dovizioso, with the Lorenzo and Dovizioso understandably spending the large majority of the test atop the bikes.

While Stoner’s attendance is nothing out of the ordinary considering his contract as a test rider with Ducati, it does offer a tidbit of interesting insight into Ducati’s development mentality. Why just poll the guys who spend all of their time on the bikes when you can also collect data from the chap who’s only hopped on it once or twice in the year?

KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA - FEBRUARY 01: Casey Stoner of Australia and Ducati Team heads down a straight during the MotoGP Tests In Sepang at Sepang Circuit on February 1, 2017 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. (Photo by Mirco Lazzari gp/Getty Images)
KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA – FEBRUARY 01: Casey Stoner of Australia and Ducati Team heads down a straight
during the MotoGP Tests In Sepang at Sepang Circuit on February 1, 2017 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. (Photo by Mirco Lazzari gp/Getty Images)

Stoner’s aptitude on the Ducati is second-to-none, and there are many out there who believe him to be the best Ducati rider flat-out. While that thought – like many of its kind in the realm of sports – is debatable, his prowess is absolutely evident. Perhaps his participation will give Ducati what it needs to steer the Desmosdeci onto the most optimal dev path and light a bit of a fire under the asses of Yamaha and Honda.

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