MotoGP: Marco Melandri injures hand in testing crash

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Struggling factory Ducati rider Marco Melandri lost more crucial time to solve some of his mounting problems in Jerez yesterday after he escaped serious injury in a testing crash.

The Italian lost the nail on the middle finger of his left hand when he lost the front of his GP8 on the brakes at the final corner as he ended 13th fastest with a best time of 1.41.396, which was 0.4s better than he managed on his way to 12th in Sunday’s Spanish GP.

Melandri’s hand injury forced him to miss the last four-and-a-half hours of track time and he told MCN: “I was lucky. When I saw the glove was open I thought I’d opened all the finger but fortunately just the nail has gone. I lost the front.

“I was trying to move the weight to the rear and for the first time we had an improvement with rear grip and traction, but maybe we took too much weight off the front.

“I was straight upright but when I braked for the last corner I locked the front wheel and went down.

“I couldn’t feel anything, I braked and I was down and that was it.”

Melandri said he lost his fingernail after his left hand got trapped under his GP8 machine and he added: “I still had my hand on the handlebars and that’s how I lost the nail.

“I was still holding on because I’ve no idea how I went down, suddenly I locked the front and I went down.”

Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt