German MotoGP: Randy de Puniet expects gruelling race

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Randy de Puniet faces the prospect of a physically gruelling German MotoGP race tomorrow after he was involved in a high-speed crash at the tight and twisty Sachsenring track today.

The Frenchman has been declared fit to compete in the 30-lap encounter after he crashed at over 140mph during qualifying.

The LCR Honda, who is the leading non-factory rider in 2010, lost control of his RC212V machine on oil dropped by Jorge Lorenzo’s factory Yamaha after a spectacular engine blow-up.

Ben Spies had crashed on the approach to the first corner and seconds later de Puniet followed the American into the gravel trap at high-speed.

He rolled several times and also clipped Spies’ Monster Yamaha Tech 3 machine before coming to a halt.

Worried that he might he broken the left ankle he fractured last summer, X-rays in the circuit medical centre showed no serious damage.

The 29-year-old, who was testing new electronics supplied by Honda after his brilliant start to 2010, was running in fifth place when he crashed.

Unable to return to the track, he lost two places with his best time of 1.22.610 securing him seventh.

He said: “What can I say? I am lucky because all my bones are in place! We have been working well with the new software and I was up there for the whole session.

"I was on my last lap on the hard tyre and was ready to come in to swap on soft ones but suddenly Jorge’s engine blew up on the straight and after few seconds the surface was full of oil.

"It happened too quick and nobody had the time to react or to display the board. Spies crashed in front of me and I did the same onto his bike hurting myself heavily.

"After last year’s left ankle fracture I was seriously worried about my condition but it’s just a scratch of the right tibia. Bu t it aches very much!

"Of course I won’t be at 100 per cent for tomorrow but my race pace is quite good and will do my best to take as many points as possible”.

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Matthew Birt

By Matthew Birt