x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Casey Stoner says title defence over as injuries force him to sit out

The Australian says he will no longer be waiting on a 'fairy-tale ending' to his season and career as an injury suffered at Indianapolis will end the defence of his MotoGP title.

Casey Stoner got up after his crash, then quickly grabbed his right ankle and went right down. The Australian needed help via a stretcher and crew to be moved to the infield medical centre.
Casey Stoner got up after his crash, then quickly grabbed his right ankle and went right down. The Australian needed help via a stretcher and crew to be moved to the infield medical centre.

 

BRNO, CZECH REPUBLIC // Casey Stoner's hopes of ending his career with a third MotoGP world title are "finished" after his Repsol Honda team announced he will miss this weekend's Czech Grand Prix to undergo surgery on his injured right ankle.

The Australian, 26, seriously injured ligaments and suffered fractures to his ankle after his violent accident in qualifying for this past Sunday's Indianapolis Grand Prix.

The Honda rider rode through the pain to secure a fourth-place race finish, eventually losing the battle for the final podium spot to Andrea Dovizioso as he tired in the latter stages.

Stoner, who will retire at the end of the season, had to be helped from his bike at the conclusion of the race.

He had planned to ride in practice today at Brno before making a decision on his involvement, but doctors have advised him to undergo surgery, and he is to return to his homeland.

Stoner sits 39 points behind championship leader Jorge Lorenzo, and with a long road to recovery lying ahead he admits he has no chance of bowing out with a title success.

"It's disappointing news," Stoner said. "It's finished our championship. I've no idea when I'll be back as until we've had the surgery we won't know ... To have these kind of disappointments is frustrating, especially in my last year. But that's racing.

"I'm not in this championship to finish on a fairy tale. I'm not always going to keep waiting for a fairy-tale ending."

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