Cal Crutchlow had a disastrous Mugello MotoGP debut yesterday, the British rider retiring after only six laps with a lack of confidence in the front-end of his Monster Yamaha Tech 3 machine.
Crutchlow had just been relegated to 10th by home favourite Valentino Rossi when he decided to pull into the pits.
There was no repeat of the major front tyre problem he experienced at the previous race in Assen, but the 25-year-old didn’t return to the track to complete the race and he said he had stopped for his own safety.
Crutchlow kept running off line and he said he didn’t carry on to risk crashing and further damaging the left collarbone he broke in five places at Silverstone last month.
He said: "Right from the first lap I didn't have any confidence or feeling with the front-end and I kept running wide. I just didn't want to crash with the Silverstone shoulder injury at the back of my mind, so I felt the safest option was to pull into the pits. I was in that battle fighting for sixth place and the last thing I want to do is not fight, but I felt like I'd reached my limit. I am sorry for the Team because we have all worked incredibly hard."
For an exclusive interview with Crutchlow on his Mugello retirement, see the July 4 issue of MCN.