McWilliams plans to race

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Jeremy McWilliams is still planning to race in this afternoon’s Qatar GP despite missing the 20-minute warm-up session.

The British rider suffered a massive crash at the end of yesterday’s qualifying session and it was feared the fall could rule him out of today’s race after checks in the Losail International Circuit’s medical centre this morning.

But he has taken painkillers and anti-inflammatory tablets and plans to take his place on the Ilmor V4 for today’s 22-lap race.

McWilliams aggravated the left femur he broke in a testing crash in Jerez at the end of November when he high-sided his Ilmor V4 on a soft Michelin qualifying tyre.
He suffered bleeding on a thigh muscle, which is putting pressure on the femur, but he plans to grit his teeth and contest the season’s opening race.

“I thought it was best to sit out the warm-up. I didn’t want to take part in the warm-up and possible sacrifice the race, “said the 42-year-old, who is constantly using an ice pack on his left leg in the Ilmor paddock office.

“I’ll put my leathers on and sit on the bike and see how I feel but my plan is to race. I’ve taken a lot of painkillers and they should help with the race starting a bit later. I’ll just grit my teeth and give it a go. Even if it is too bad and I have to pull in at least I’ll be getting more information which is crucial for us, “said McWilliams.

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Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt