Ducati’s Chaz Davies was one of six competitors who refused to take to the San Juan grid for WorldSBK race one on safety grounds today and said in this day and age, riders should not be put in this kind of situation.
A majority of the grid made representations to series bosses before the first race of the weekend, saying the high temperatures made the surface too slick to race on, with Davies observing that oil had come up through the surface.
“The temperature has gone up and up and up today. We felt, as riders, it was incredibly risky to do it. Unfortunately, there is always pressure from team manager, manufacturers, to go out there and race,” said Davies, speaking at the track.
Davies said that Jonathan Rea was put under huge pressure to ride by Kawasaki so was forced to go out even though he didn’t want to.
Some people have got things to fight for. In this case some of us stuck together. Even the world champion, two minutes before the pitlane was due to open, said he wasn’t happy to race but he had massive pressure from his team to go and do it, but he wasn’t happy. I’m super disappointed in that.
“I wanted to be out there. The point is that in these conditions, there is oil coming up, this afternoon was two seconds slower than this morning and it was even dirtier. The circuit is not in a stable condition at the moment.
“We have seen from the temperature changes that a little bit of heat really affects it and we said that tomorrow looks cooler, can we do two big races, possibly even the Superpole race.
“I stand by the decision some of us made. We shouldn’t be in this situation, coming to circuit in 2019 with conditions like this. We shouldn’t be here full stop.
“The pressure that it puts on you to go out there in risky conditions is massive. Nothing is bigger than safety in this sport. Loris Baz is already injured and we saw that coming yesterday, it’s a crap situation.”