Shoeys, being sensible and sitting out – Jack writes about the San Marino GP.
I tell you, this is starting to get a little bit old. You turn up at a race track, can’t wait for the weekend, feel really positive, and then you end up missing the race. That’s three out of the last four that I’ve had to miss after sitting out on Sunday at Misano, and I’m going to do something about it this week.
Silverstone was hard after I’d discovered that I had the small fracture in my right hand from the Austrian crash on the British GP weekend – it hadn’t been a problem until I got on the bike at Silverstone and tried to get the bike stopped in those heavy braking zones on that track. I got through that race, and it was as much fading tyres as the hand injury that saw me fall to 16th at the end.
I was optimistic Misano would be better with seven days to get my body right, and it was at first, FP1 on Friday went really well. I was about seven-tenths off top spot and 13th and felt pretty good, but then the track temps went up about 18 degrees between that and FP2 and I went backwards. I was nine-tenths slower and I felt like I couldn’t have pushing harder, I was giving it everything and I was 20th, which was massively disappointing. With the hotter track, my confidence in the front-end of the bike was pretty low, and my hand was really sore.
We made some pretty major setting changes for Saturday after going through all the data the night before, and I was busting my arse to get a better lap time, but 17th on the grid in qualifying was as good as I could do. All my better laps were within three-tenths of each other, which shows that I was probably getting the best out of what I had and with how I felt. I gave it all I had. The hand just kept getting worse, and by Sunday morning, the thought of doing 28 laps in the race around a place as tight and twisty in Misano made pulling out the only sensible decision.
The team were completely supportive, HRC too, and it’s the only way to properly feel better and not just soldier on race by race so far from my best. They just want a fully-recovered rider, and that’s all I want too. I can’t wait to get back into the fight properly with these guys because the season just gets better every weekend. Dani (Pedrosa) was incredible on Sunday, and that’s eight different winners in the last eight races if you can believe that. The popular local bloke at Misano was pretty happy with second too. This shoey thing seems to be catching on!
— MotoGP™ (@MotoGP) September 11, 2016
Anyway, this week. We have a weekend off between Misano and Aragon and I’ll be using some of that to go to Barcelona to get an MRI scan with Dr Xavier Mir – you would have heard his name before as he’s the top doctor all of us riders go to when we hurt ourselves, which for me has been way too often lately. I’ve got to get to the bottom of this and get right again. There’s only five more races left this year, which is crazy when you think about it. I need to be in all of them and in a position to race and race like I want to.
That’ll be this week, but last week wasn’t all bad as I spent some time in Italy with Cal Crutchlow and his wife Lucy at their place there before we headed to Misano. We flew straight from Silverstone to Italy with Maverick Vinales after Maverick won his first GP in England. It’s been an amazing year generally but for me to win my first race and two of my better mates in the paddock in Cal and Maverick to do the same thing, it’s been awesome. I took control of the BBQ at Cal’s and we had a good few days. I’ll be at a mate’s wedding next weekend, and then it’s eyes forward for Aragon and being right for that. I hope I’ll have some racing to tell you about after that one …
This story originally appeared on redbull.com.au
Photos courtesy of Marc VDS.