One might think that what worries Crutchlow the most is the condition of his leg, with a fractured tibia and an anterior cruciate ligament injury. In his condition, one should (metaphorical) take leaps of joy for the sixth time position of the day at the Sachsenring, but Cal's thinking about Marquez.
I'm simply not fast enough," was his self-criticism. "I'm not saying I didn't do well, but it's not enough. All the MotoGP riders have to come up against Marc, but this comparison for me is even more difficult because we ride the same bike. I struggled today, and it's not clear to me why."
Your physical condition is not the best. Couldn't that be an explanation?
"In relation to that, I'm happy. My leg is not a big limit, except for the first and third turns, which are very narrow. Now all we have to do is wait for tomorrow to see if it'll get better or worse."
Did you take painkillers?
"No, I only used ice, then by moving, it gets better. In fact, at the end of the rounds, I felt better than in the beginning. The real problem is when I stop. I know my situation is not exactly ideal. I almost made the bike fall in front of the pits when I stopped."
Does the Sachsenring help you manage the situation?
"If I really want to see it positively, it's the best circuit that could have happened to me. I can't imagine what it would have been like to ride in Assen with those fast changes in direction. The problem, like I said, is especially the third turn where there's a really big bend angle. We continue to throw the bike down."
A soccer player, with your injury, wouldn't have played for 6 months...
"That means I won't play soccer," he said laughing. "Soccer players always complain. Women's soccer is much better to watch. It's much more fun. Seriously though, I don't have to do their leg movements when I'm on the bike."
When will you be back in shape?
"It'll take 6 months for a complete recovery, but I won't need surgery. I've had problems with that leg for a while. At the beginning of last year, I fell down stairs because my knee had no stability."
You talked about Marquez before, but Quartararo is also very fast.
During the tests in Sepang I said that Fabio would be the fastest rookie and everyone laughed. At least I was right," he laughed. "Quartararo has an enormous talent. He rides wonderfully. Always on the cusp of it. He has the Yamaha on his side, which is a gentle bike. Now we'll have to see what'll happen when he begins to understand the MotoGP better and will start playing with the setup. That's the hardest thing."