Stoner rolls on to delay Lorenzo`s coronation
Motegi: Australian Casey Stoner stormed to his second successive victory for Ducati at Sunday`s Japanese Grand Prix while MotoGP world champion-elect Jorge Lorenzo finished fourth.
The fast-starting Stoner continued his recent hot form at Motegi`s Twin Ring circuit but the real drama unfolded behind him as Lorenzo locked horns with Yamaha team mate Valentino Rossi.
The Ducati rider passed Honda`s pole-sitter Andrea Dovizioso almost as soon as they had exited turn one and never looked back, finishing almost four seconds clear of the Italian.
Behind them a furious battle raged between Yamaha`s Lorenzo and Rossi, the pair clashing repeatedly and their bikes scraping against each other with two laps left in a hair-raising finale.
Rossi held off Lorenzo to keep his team mate off the podium for the second race in a row, although the Spaniard stretched his lead in the title race to 69 points.
Lorenzo is virtually assured his first premier class world title after countryman Dani Pedrosa fractured his collarbone in Friday`s practice. Lorenzo has 297 points to Pedrosa`s 228.
Stoner, who also won at Aragon last month, is third in the standings on 180 points with four races remaining.