Many riders used the last two weeks off to recharge their batteries and, at the same time, get in shape for the triple-header that will see them race in Japan, Australia and Malaysia. This was Danilo Petrucci's plan too, but he ended up having to spend time in bed.
“On Sunday, as I packed my bag, I was wondering whether I'd even be able to travel - he confesses - I've had the worst week of the year. I was in Viareggio, seeing Dr. Ceccarelli at Formula Medicine as part of my preparation and the evening before we went out to dinner. I ate a seafood salad and I few hours later I started to feel ill”.
The restaurant definitely won't be getting a good review from Danilo on Trip Advisor.
“I think it was salmonella - he continues - luckily the doctors started treating me immediately but I couldn't eat anything for a few days. I was very dehydrated, the only positive is that I've lost a couple of kilos” he jokes.
But unfortunately he was unable to train.
“That's the biggest problem, but luckily I'm feeling better. I had to take a course of antibiotics that weakened me but I'm recovering ”.
Good news, considering he's now at a track that smiles upon the Ducati.
“Historically that's the case, but this year our bike has won at tracks where it seemed impossible to do so, struggling at others that have been favourable in the past - he warns - Right now, the important thing is to quickly find good balance with the tyres, if you can do that straight away the rest is easy, otherwise it's tough. All in all, there's light at the end of the tunnel when I think about this track”.
He'll definitely be trying also because he has nothing to lose.
“I don't have anything particular to play for, so I can take it race by race - confirms Petrucci - On the other hand, I would also like to be the best satellite rider in the standings, though it's more complicated after Aragon. I want to always score points, this season I've had some great results but also some zeroes which have weighed heavily. What would I like? To be back on the podium before the end of the year”.
Bad weather is forecast for the upcoming Motegi weekend, something that could work in Danilo's favour.
“Let's just say that if it rains, I wouldn't be the unhappiest rider in the paddock - he smiles - But this track is very grippy and in the wet it could be different to normal. I'm usually fast in the wet, but first we need to see how the asphalt is and especially the Michelins”.