MotoGP: Crutchlow and Lorenzo downplay practice collision

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Both Cal Crutchlow and Jorge Lorenzo have shrugged off a free practice one collision – and consequent gravel trap row – at the Japanese Grand Prix, after Crutchlow lost control of his LCR Honda and wiped out the factory Ducati rider in front of him.

But despite coming away from the heavy impact with bruising to his left hand, Lorenzo was quick to downplay the incident afterwards, admitting instead that it could have been much worse given the force of the crash and the fact that he was totally unprepared for the collision.

“Firstly Cal didn’t try to apologise – instead he wanted to know why I was so slow! But this is Cal, and after two hours he came to see me and said sorry and that it was his fault. Yes, I was riding slower, but he could see me in front, and I thought I was on the right line to not do anything stupid until he braked so late and so aggressively. But he feels sorry and that’s ok.

“I was really afraid, because twenty seconds after the crash my hand was already inflamed so much and I had a lot of pain. I thought I had broken something, but the x-ray says it was fine. It could have ended quite badly after how the bike impacted me.”

However, while Crutchlow did shoulder the majority of the blame after the crash, he also argued that Lorenzo was also partly at fault as he backed off and prepared to enter the pits after setting his fastest time of the day.

“In the end, I hit him and I look like I’m completely the villain – but he was going really slow on the racing line! I had to brake harder because he was going slow and I was going to hit him either way, and I locked the front on the standing water. He was six seconds slower than the previous lap and he knew I was coming.

“But I crashed into him, so it doesn’t look good for me! We’re never going to agree on the situation, that’s for sure! But the main thing is that we’re both ok. I didn’t want to take him out, and it was a big crash! We can’t laugh about it now, but we can at least smile about it because we’re both ok!”

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Simon Patterson

By Simon Patterson

MotoGP and road racing reporter, photographer, videographer