Iannone has decided, and will not race in the Aragon GP. Having taken part in first practice this morning (finishing in 6th place, 0”771 behind Marquez), Andrea has analysed his situation and prefers to entrust his bike to Pirro at this race. The fractured vertebra he suffered at Misano is still limiting him too much.
“It wasn't an easy decision to take, but I had to do it”, he says.
How did you feel on the bike this morning?
“I have to admit that my feelings on the bike were positive, I was able to improve my times using just one tyre. The negative sensations had to do with my physical condition”.
Were you in pain?
“A lot of pain but, most importantly, I didn't the strength and that's no good when you're riding a MotoGP. This was what led me to make the decision to stop, my lack of strength is the biggest issue and in these conditions, it's too easy to make a mistake. To continue would be stupid”.
What happened as you made more laps?
“The pain increased and my strength decreased. Also, half an hour into the session, my neck locked up”.
This morning you didn't take painkillers, could that have been a solution?
“Maybe but the doctors explained that I would have lost riding sensitivity. I've experienced that in the past, things happen on the bike that you cannot explain. We're going at 340 km/h, I want to be 100% conscious of what's going on”.
Do you think you could have completed the race?
“I would have finished it somehow but it would have been difficult to maintain the right speed for 23 laps. After about ten I would have suffered a drop in performance. Here I know that I could have been competitive and it's not easy to decide to sit it out, but I don't want to find myself in a situation in which I'm taking risks that are not worth taking”.
It's better to rest…
“I've made my choice by looking reality in the face. At Misano, the doctors told me I would need 25 days before the fracture was fully healed, I'm still ten days short”.
So there's enough time before the Japanese GP…
“I'm very confident, not continuing here was the only possible solution if I look ahead. I would have paid dearly for the effort made over these three days, so it's better to make the most of next week to train, rather than recuperate”.
As already stated, it will be Michele Pirro to stand in for Iannone. The test rider was already on stand-by and arrived at Aragon last night: “I thought Andrea would race - he says - I haven't raced at Aragon for five years, I hope to start from where we left off with the good result at Misano”.