WEST HAMPERED BY CRASH AT SACHSENRING Kawasaki's Anthony West bounced back from a high-speed crash this morning, to finish the opening day of practice for Sunday's German Grand Prix at Sachsenring 15th fastest on combined times. The...
WEST HAMPERED BY CRASH AT SACHSENRING
Kawasaki's Anthony West bounced back from a high-speed crash this morning, to finish the opening day of practice for Sunday's German Grand Prix at Sachsenring 15th fastest on combined times.
The 26-year-old Australian had been lapping consistently throughout the hour-long morning session, as he worked with his crew to improve the braking stability of his Ninja ZX-RR. But as the session drew to a close, West lost the front of his Kawasaki on the entry to the 230 km/h left-hander at turn six, crashing heavily.
The Kawasaki pilot suffered injuries to his back and left forearm as he tumbled through the gravel trap, with the result that he returned to the track for this afternoon's free practice session more than a little battered and bruised.
West was also restricted to just one bike for afternoon practice, as his number one machine was almost completely destroyed in the crash and there was too little time between sessions for the Australian's crew to rebuild a spare bike from the ground up.
While West and his crew made significant improvements to the set-up of his Ninja ZX-RR throughout the hour-long second practice session, the Kawasaki rider struggled with changing direction through the high-speed sections of the track, due mainly to the back injury restricting his movement on the bike.
West will receive treatment on his injured back tonight, and he remains confident that a top ten grid position is a realistic target for tomorrow's qualifying session.
West: #13 - 15th - 1'23.452
"We had some problems with braking stability this morning, but the biggest problem was the crash right at the end of the session. When I hit the gravel trap something must have dug in, because I started tumbling and that's what damaged my back. It was a bit painful during the afternoon session, especially through the high-speed sections where you need to use your bodyweight to get the bike to change direction. We made some definite improvements to the bike this afternoon, especially with the braking stability. Through some sections of the track it's working really well, but we still need to look at improving drive out of the turns; specifically at the last corner which leads onto the start finish straight. I will get some treatment on my back tonight, and I'm pretty sure it won't be an issue tomorrow. This track is really difficult to pass at, so qualifying in the top ten is essential tomorrow afternoon."
Kaneko: Kawasaki Technical Manager
"This morning we had some problems with braking stability, especially in a straight line, but we made significant improvements in this area during the afternoon. Anthony is still saying that he lacks some feeling through certain parts of the track, so we need to look at altering the balance of the bike for tomorrow. We also need to improve drive stability, especially out of the last corner, as the bike is moving around too much under acceleration and that makes it difficult for Anthony to get on the gas early. Because we're not sure what the weather will do tomorrow we tested all of our tyre options today. If the conditions on Sunday are the same as today then we know we have a good tyre for the race."