Stoner wins, claims championship

AS RACES go, it was a pretty ho-hum affair, but as a victory parade for Casey Stoner it could hardly have been better.

Stoner led yesterday's Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix from start to finish, scoring his fifth straight win at Phillip Island and clinching his second world championship.

On the day he turned 26, all his birthdays came at once, as the old saying goes, when circumstances conspired to hand him the race and the title on a platter.

The victory may not have been as easy as it looked, with a couple of brief showers giving him at least one heart-in-his-mouth moment, but Stoner's mastery was complete.

Following his domination of practice on Friday and pole position on Saturday, he took the race by the throat and never let go, setting the fastest lap on his way to humiliating the rest of the depleted 14-bike field.


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