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Casey wins in Laguna with Dani 3rd, marking Repsol Honda's 300th podium

The Repsol Honda Team leaves Laguna Seca very happy and ready for a well deserved summer break. Casey Stoner took his fourth win of 2012 and Dani Pedrosa, third, celebrating his ninth podium in ten races, a successful combination that allows the Repsol Honda Team to celebrate the 300th podium in the premier class.

After a difficult weekend trying to make the hard tyre work on his RC213V, Casey took a risky tyre choice just before leaving for the grid, opting for the soft rear, while Dani and Lorenzo took the hard. It was a good move for Casey to increase his confidence at a circuit he likes a lot and where only he and Wayne Rainey have won three times in the top class. Dani was unable to keep up with the pace of Casey and Lorenzo, but still managed to record a new fastest race lap on lap 5 with 1'21.229.

With this victory, Casey celebrates his 37th premier class win equalling Mike Hailwood and is joint 4th in overall premier class victories behind Rossi (79), Agostini (68) and Doohan (54).

Dani remained loyal on his podium visits and with his third place finish at Laguna, equals his longest sequence of successive podiums (5) in the MotoGP class and equals Casey in fifth position in premier class podium finishes with 65.

The Repsol Honda Teams takes now a breath for the summer break with Dani second in the MotoGP World Championship, 23 points behind Lorenzo, and Casey in the third position, 9 points behind Dani.

Casey Stoner 1st World Championship Standing: 3rd with 173 points
"It's been a difficult weekend for us in general especially trying to make the hard tyre work. So for the race I decided to go with the soft option and be a little more careful with the tyre, keep a little more traction and not spin so much. At the beginning of the race I tried to move to the front but Dani and Jorge were riding very good lines and it was impossible to get past. I decided to slow the lap times a little and try to save the tyres until the end and then we could start to come back. I was confident for the entire race that I had enough pace for the win, we just needed to make sure the tyre would last until the end. When we got to the front we put in some good laps and pulled some small advantage and just continued from there. I'm very, very happy and a big thanks to all the team".

Jorge Lorenzo 2nd World Championship Standing: 1st with 205 points
“I tried my best the beginning to open a gap and I managed it but then in the corkscrew I almost crashed. For Casey maybe that was a motivation and he caught me in one lap. After that I couldn’t keep the pace I had in the beginning, maybe the soft tyre was the best option for this race. Without a doubt Casey was riding in an excellent form today and it wasn’t possible to beat him.”

Dani Pedrosa 3rd World Championship Standing: 2nd with 182 points
"I tried my best in this race and third place was the maximum I could get this time. At the beginning, I was quite confident and calm when Casey passed me because I knew he was on the soft rear tyre and this was the most risky choice for the race, but finally it worked out perfectly for him. I knew I also had a good pace, but when I caught Casey again and was ready to overtake him I was on the throttle too fast and I had too much momentum there, I almost found myself on the floor. I lost ground with the leaders, but when I started braking harder trying to close the gap again I lost the front many times and I was so close to not finish this race. Anyway, I'm satisfied because I kept pushing until the end, giving one hundred per cent although today it wasn't enough. A small mistake it's just enough to not finish in front. Anyway, we were riding the new bike for the first time here and we took another podium. We know what we can improve to come back stronger in Indianapolis".

Stefan Bradl, LCR Honda MotoGP: 7th
“Actually it was a positive debut for us in Laguna. I am quite happy about this seventh place. In general it was a pretty difficult weekend for us, because we mainly started to work on the bike Saturday afternoon as on Friday I had to learn the track. Basically in the beginning of the race I was quite comfortable on the bike, because we had full fuel on board, but after ten laps I started to lose confidence compared to Dovi (Dovizioso) and (Cal) Crutchlow due to the front end issues that we already had yesterday. From that moment it was too dangerous for me entering the corners with the same speed. Then I tried to keep Nicky (Hayden) behind me, but I could see he was faster than me. I think we have done our best and we keep this experience for next season.”

Ben Spies, DNF
“We had a technical failure in the swingarm. I was feeling really good, I didn’t have the grip that I had in the earlier sessions with the harder tyre but in the last ten laps I was starting to pull away and I had a little left up my sleeve. We started to stretch out a lead over Dovi then all of a sudden at the bottom of the corkscrew the bike went out from underneath me. I had no control, it didn’t slide or anything just completely went. At first I thought I’d hit a bump but there isn’t one there. It’s nobody’s fault but it’s more bad luck.”

Valentino Rossi, DNF
“I wasn’t fighting for the podium, but a crash like that at the end of the race is still disappointing because I had done the whole race like the first lap and my rhythm wasn’t fast at that moment. Still, I lost the front when I was approaching the Corkscrew, when the bike was vertical, right when I touched the brake, a bit like happened at Silverstone. We have a real problem: again today, we had a hard time getting the front tyre to work, and it was like new after thirty laps. Fortunately I’m fine, although it was a pretty hard crash. It wasn’t a great weekend. Now we have a short break, two important weeks, and then we’ll see how it goes at Indy.”

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