Honda concedes stuck throttle cause of Stoner crash
Honda has acknowledged that a stuck throttle was to blame for the crash that put Casey Stoner out of the Suzuka 8 Hours, after appearing to initially blame the Australian.
The two-time MotoGP champion had been leading the endurance event aboard the HARC-Pro Honda, but sustained a broken scapula and a fractured tibia in a spectacular accident approaching the hairpin just over an hour into the race.
Although a stuck throttle was later revealed to be the cause of the crash, a HRC statement initially appeared to pin the blame on rider error – a theory disproven by video footage of the crash that emerged on social media and was shared by Stoner himself.
A subsequent press statement retracted this claim, confirming instead that the throttle was open by 26 degrees.
“Together with HRC staff, the team checked the machine, and confirmed from the data that the throttle was 26 degrees open before the crash,” read the statement.
“It wasn’t clear why this happened and now the bike will be sent to HRC for a full inspection.”
Stoner also gave his version events in the statement, expressing his frustration at the way in which his first appearance in the Suzuka 8 Hours came to an end.
“Unfortunately, we experienced some mechanical trouble as I was going through the corner leading up to the hairpin,” recalled the 29-year-old.
“I did not have enough time to engage the clutch [once the throttle had stuck] and I came in with too much speed.
“I picked the bike up to try to slow down more but I was heading towards the wall so I decided to lay it over and hit the barrier.
“Unfortunately, they were a lot harder than they looked and we came out of it with a broken bone in the ankle and broken scapula.”
The race was won by the factory Yamaha shared by current MotoGP riders Bradley Smith and Pol Espargaro, as well as Katsuyuki Nakasuga.
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