Casey Stoner Leads A List Of The Top 10 Aussie Performers In World Motorsport Throughout 2011

On two wheels, we continued to punch well above our weight, while on four wheel Aussies battled bad luck, team politics and questionable decisions from officials to keep their heads high.

And so as the flag falls on 2011, we countdown the top 10 Aussie performers of 2011 beginning with the man who returned Australia to the factory Repsol Honda squad for the first time since Mick Doohan. 

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1. Casey Stoner

No man (or woman) in motorsport did Australia prouder than MotoGP world champion Casey Stoner. He was the Sebastian Vettel of two-wheels in 2011.

Of the 17 completed grands prix this year, Stoner won 10 of them and only missed the podium once (when he was taken out by Valentino Rossi in Spain), on his way to a second world title.

Not only that, but he and wife Adriana Stoner are expecting their first child.  What a year 2011 was for Casey.

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2. Will Power

Like 2010, Will Power was the only man to take the title fight to reigning IndyCar champ Dario Franchitti in 2011. And again like 2010, Power fell agonisingly short. Just 18 points shy after the tragic race at Las Vegas was abandoned.

No one could match Power on the road and street courses, and the Aussie claimed the Mario Andretti trophy as road course champion.

Despite claiming his maiden oval-course win though, Team Penske faltered too many times on the ovals.  Expect a different tune in a more road-friendly 2012 season.

3. Mark Webber

Mark Webber had his best ever Formula One points haul in 2011 with 258, but it was still well short of the 392 scored by Red Bull teammate Sebastian Vettel.

It could be argued that Webber could have done more with the clearly quick Red Bull, but after claiming a final-round race win in Brazil, and recording just one DNF, the F1 veteran has proven his worth. 

It's also worth noting that Webber beat three world champions to third in the standings.

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Who is your pick for the best Aussie performer of 2011? Vote in our poll and leave your thoughts in the comment box below.

4. Marcos Ambrose

With a brand new Sprint Cup team, 2011 was poised to be an evolution for the former V8 Supercars champ. While there were plenty of races to forget, there were plenty to remember as well. Of course his win in Watkins Glen was the pinnacle, but on ovals he racked plenty of good results. Five top fives and 12 top 10s saw the Americans stand up and take notice of the Tasmanian in the No.9 car who almost made the chase.

Ambrose is a definite Chase contender in 2012.

5. Jamie Whincup

Some will argue that teammate Craig Lowndes was unlucky at times as he was forced to stack up in pitstops, but you can’t deny that J-Dub has consistently been the man to beat in 2011. He had a couple of hiccups in races at Hamilton, Darwin, Ipswich, and Sydney but only qualified outside of the top five three times.

Whincup is a deserved V8 Supercars champion.

6. Chad Reed

It was a year that could have been for Chad Reed, but he still performed brilliantly in the AMA Supercross and Motocross championships. After missing out on the Supercross title by just four points with his fledgling, self-funded team, he was in good stead to make up for it in Motocross.

Reed led the points until his famous crash at Spring Creek. His effort in that race – getting back on the bike and finishing 14th - alone made Australia extremely proud, but fighting for the rest of the season injured was the stuff of champions.

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7. Broc Parkes

The 2011 World Supersport season started with a bang at Phillip Island. A three-way photo finish between Parkes, Luca Scassa and Sam Lowes saw the Aussie pipped by just 0.09 seconds.

Ever the entertainer, Parkes demonstrated his planking skills with a win at Misano before finishing the season fourth in points.

8. Darcy Ward

Wildcard entry Darcy Ward ignited the FIM Speedway Grand Prix circuit with a podium on debut in 2011 but it was in England’s Elite League where he really shone. Ward, along with compatriots Chris Holder and Davey Watt, was decisive in the Poole Pirates title-winning campaign.

9. Jed Metcher

Another example of Australia’s unsung two-wheeled champions, Jed Metcher took the European Superstock 600 championship in 2011 with minimal fuss. Run as a support category for the World Superbike circuit, the prestigious feeder category is hotly contested by the world’s rising stars. Metcher claimed the title at the final round in Portugal.

10. Arthur Sissis

Aussie teenage sensation Arthur Sissis put himself on a path to greatness in 2011. He finished second in the Rookies Cup, despite previously never having raced in anything outside of speedway.

He’s set to step up to Moto3 in 2012, so remember his name!

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Honourable mention:

SPEED Phil

Motorsport’s favourite flightless bird, SPEED Phil traversed the world in 2011 following motorcycling glory. He planked in Portimao, preened in Portugal and danced at Donnington. Not bad for a little penguin from Phillip Island!

SPEED Phil will return in 2012 both on Twitter, and as a part of SPEED’s LIVE World Superbike coverage.

Voting closes Wednesday December 21st at 12pm AEDT.

Source : https://www.foxsports.com.au/motorsport/moto-gp/casey-stoner-leads-a-list-of-the-top-10-aussie-performers-in-world-motorsport-throughout-2011/news-story/86cc44666dc1a354e321e157bf56fe7a

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Casey Stoner leads a list of the top 10 Aussie performers in world motorsport throughout 2011

Source:Fox Sports

Casey Stoner leads a list of the top 10 Aussie performers in world motorsport throughout 2011