Sachsenring (Germany), Yamaha Factory Racing rider Jorge Lorenzo will not continue to participate in this weekend’s Motorrad Grand Prix Deutschland following a high speed crash this afternoon in the second of the day’s free practice sessions.
Reigning World Champion Lorenzo had been the fastest rider of the morning session, despite still recovering from surgery just two weeks ago on a collarbone injury sustained in practice for the Assen TT.
The afternoon session had started well with the Mallorcan flying straight into the top of the time sheets with a 1’22.047 second lap. The success was to be short-lived however as less than ten minutes in Lorenzo suffered a huge high-side crash, falling heavily onto the injured shoulder.
Team mate Valentino Rossi carried his confidence from his race win in Assen two weeks ago to the morning session and was quickly up to pace and a serious contender in the top group of riders, wrapping in third just 0.194 seconds from Lorenzo in first.
The afternoon saw a more complex session for the Italian as the team worked through a number of different settings and tyre choices to get the best out of the YZR-M1 as the track temperature increased. Rossi completed the first day in fourth position in the combined times just 0.2 of a second from the front.
Jorge Lorenzo (2nd / 1'22.047 / 22 laps): “I have decided to go home and recover after today's crash at Sachsenring. I prefer to focus on surgery to fix the plate that was unfortunately bent during the crash. I will try to recover and be back as soon as possible."
Valentino Rossi (4th / 1'22.241 / 38 laps): “At the end it's a positive day for us, the practices were not so bad. Our pace and lap time was good and we are not so far from the front. This afternoon we had some difficulties when we tried some different things on the bike, the harder front tyre and some different settings.
It looks like when the track has more temperature it gives us more problems, especially after some laps, so to ride the bike at the limit is more difficult. We have to work on the setting to improve our pace to stay with the front. Anyway we are not so far. Five or six riders have good pace so it will be interesting tomorrow.”
Wilco Zeelenberg, (Team Manager): “Second practice here in Sachsenring has gone wrong like in Assen. This morning fastest and this afternoon a fast crash on maybe the second or third lap. Again he has hit the left shoulder and the plate has been bent. It’s obviously very painful so we need to consider and step by step decide what the plan is for the coming days.”
Massimo Meregalli (Yamaha Factory Racing Team Director): “Following from such a strong performance in Assen this is not how we wanted to start the Sachsenring weekend. Unfortunately Jorge has further complicated the injury to his shoulder in this afternoon’s crash so will need to return home for surgery tomorrow.
We are very sorry to see him leave us however he has his full team support and we know he will come back fighting as soon as it is physically possible. It was good to see Vale start today with the same promise and pace we saw in Assen.
We have some issues to work through to find the best set up to cope with warmer temperatures at the track but we are confident he will be a key protagonist on Sunday.”
Doctor Enric Cáceres (Yamaha Factory Racing, Member of the Immediate Intervention Dexeus to MotoGP): “The diagnosis after the fall is that the osteosynthesis material is bent in the middle. The screws of the proximal and distal have endured but Jorge will need a new intervention to re-attach the clavicle, because the plate has been curved slightly.”
Yamaha Factory Racing