MOTORSPORT WRAP FOR MONDAY 1ST JUNE 2009
STONER TAKES WIN AND CHAMPIONSHIP LEAD
Australia's Casey Stoner has grabbed the lead in the MotoGP World Championship after a sensational ride in varying conditions at the Italian Grand Prix at Mugello.
Heavy rain before the race meant riders started on the Bridgestone wet weather tyre compound. However, as the track started to dry, the riders began to dive into the pits to change to slick tyres.
Stoner had slipped to sixth position by lap eight before eating into the lead on his Bridgestone slicks.
Opting for the medium-compound front and rear Bridgestone tyres, Stoner chased down Honda rider Andrea Dovizioso to take the lead on lap 14 and record his first Italian Grand Prix for his Ducati team.
"When the track was very wet the bike was working great, but as soon as the track started to dry out a bit we struggled," Stoner said.
"I wanted to be as close as possible to the leaders when we did change to slicks, so we pushed it further than we would have normally, but I had a really good feeling with the slick tyres immediately and we were able to start chasing down Dovizioso bit by bit."
Bridgestone predicted Mugello would be the toughest test of tyres so far this season, and the weather added to this challenge in the fourth MotoGP weekend to be affected by rain this year.