Danilo Petrucci's Saturday was a difficult one, ending in the gravel of Turn 9 just as he was recording his best times. The Ducati rider was immediately transported to the medical center with a serious contusion and an injury to the ligaments of the thumb of his right hand. He'll be present tomorrow during the race, except for unexpected surprises.
"I got scared at the moment," said Petrucci, "because it was a fall in a very fast point, at almost 200km/h, and I immediately felt a lot of pain in my right hand and left wrist, which I had already injured in 2014 in Jerez. I thought I broke something because my hand immediately turned black. It's a real shame that I fell at that moment because I was riding well. I closed the throttle a little later than usual, and I completely lost control of the front, so many of us have problems at these points."
Before the fall, there was no noteworthy lap for Petrucci also because of Mir, who hindered him several times. Why were you so angry with the Suzuki rider?
"Initially, I was far from Mir," Danilo said, "but he was really slow. At Turn 11, he saw me, but he stayed in the middle of the track, so I took up more space to push forward, but the same thing also happened in the next lap. I don't know why he did that. I probably could have gotten more space, but I thought a second was enough. What made me angry was that he saw me twice, and he was still in the middle of the track."
Apart from the fall and the traffic, however, we also need to comment on the bad day Ducati had and the race pace. How did the FP4 go?
I started with an old tire that had 17 laps on it," Petrucci said , "but I didn't do very well. I'm not strong, even when it starts to lose grip. Today, there were lots of fast laps, but I believe that I won't be very far tomorrow in the second part of the race."
Few expectations, therefore, on a track that Ducati does not stomach and, even today, his injury could affect Petrucci. What is missing, and what do you expect from the race?
"Surely, I won't be competitive enough for the podium this time," concluded Petrux. "We still have to race, but we'll have to have a good job on the tires tomorrow. Both Dovizioso and I are far from the others. I hope to be able to hold the handlebar tomorrow, but I think the situation is improving anyway. I'll need an MRI for my left wrist in the next few days because I might have ruined my ligaments."
Audio recorded by Marco Caregnato