MotoGP: Casey Stoner tipped for success in V8 Supercars

Aragon MotoGP

  • Venue: Motorland, Aragon, Spain
  • Saturday 29 September: Qualifying 11:55 BST - 15:05 BST, Red Button/online
  • Sunday 30 September: Moto2 & Moto3 races 09:55 BST - 12:05 BST, Red Button/online; MotoGP race, 12:30 BST - 14:00 BST, BBC Two & BBC HD; MotoGP extra 14:00 BST - 14:30 BST, Red Button/online

Ever since Casey Stoner announced his retirement from MotoGP earlier this year, I have been scratching my head wondering just what he would do next.

As a former bike racer myself, I knew full well that Stoner would have to find an outlet for his talent and desire to race - especially as he is only 26 years old.

Well in the last week or so we may finally have been given an answer, as Stoner looks at moving into the world of V8 Supercar racing in his native Australia.

He will probably have some time off first but it looks like he will be back on a grid soon enough, and unsurprisingly the consensus is that he will do very well.

All-time career MotoGP/500cc wins

  • Valentino Rossi (2000-) 79
  • Giacomo Agostini (1965-77) 68
  • Mick Doohan (1989-99) 54
  • Mike Hailwood (1958-67) 37
  • Casey Stoner (2006- ) 37

I've been speaking to a few MotoGP riders and people who have worked with him over the years and they all believe he will be a success. He has a natural feel for racing and amazing ability which he can transfer to anything he wants to.

Most motorcycle racers who have done well have transferred their skills across to car racing when they've tried it.

You can go back to John Surtees of course,  who won titles on two and four wheels. Mike Hailwood was a terrific car racer,  while Johnny Cecotto won loads of championships  and got into Formula 1. Even I gave it a go, trying truck racing after I'd retired.

I found it easier - for a start it's a lot safer on four wheels than two and for Stoner and his family that will be a big deal. The V8 Series is all based down the east coast of Australia so the maximum travelling time he is probably facing is a few hours on a plane. He'll be home every Sunday night, which after 10 years or so of constant long-distance travelling will be a huge difference.

He will get a good drive I'm sure, as win or lose he will be guaranteed publicity over there.

Whether he will get the same satisfaction from it I doubt, as he hasn't totally fulfilled his career in MotoGP. But it will be a better lifestyle for him.

MotoGP standings

  • Jorge Lorenzo (Spa): 270 points
  • Dani Pedrosa (Spa): 232
  • Casey Stoner (Aus): 186
  • Andrea Dovizioso (Ita): 163
  • Cal Crutchlow (GB): 122

There will be a lot of people who want him to fail as none of the car driving guys will want him to come over and show them up. But that is only natural.

I for one am looking forward to seeing how he gets on.

Back to the present, and the sting was taken out of the championship last time out when Dani Pedrosa crashed out at Misano, but all he can do now is win races.

It is not at all impossible that Jorge Lorenzo's engine could blow up in Aragon this weekend or someone could take him out but the odds are stacked in his favour now with five races left.

He will be looking over his shoulder going into the first corner of every race, that's for sure. But if he finishes every race now the title is as good as his.

The other bit of news this week is that Jonny Rea is staying in World Superbikes for at least another year.

He looked at all his options but the team that could maybe have offered him a ride in MotoGP - Gresini Honda - are sponsored by a company whose market is Spain and Italy.

I get the feeling that they want a Spanish or Italian rider and you can understand that. Sponsors pay the bills, and sometimes your passport counts.

Steve's Aragon predictions:

1. Dani Pedrosa 2. Jorge Lorenzo 3. Andrea Dovizioso

Steve Parrish was talking to BBC Sport's Tom Rostance