Repsol Honda rider Jorge Lorenzo admitted that he will be using Sunday’s 20-lap British MotoGP at Silverstone as an extended fitness session, as the Spaniard continues his rehab from injury.
The former World Champion has missed the last four races after fracturing a vertebrate during free practice in Assen at the tail end of June. After an extended lay-off, Lorenzo returned in Silverstone, however, struggled through the opening two days.
Lorenzo qualified in 21st, with only Karel Abraham behind him. When asked if it was worth attempting to race, Lorenzo said: “There’s always a risk when you jump on a MotoGP bike, but I’m here to try to do the weekend, to do the race, because a race pace and race length is the best training I can get to be able to train my muscles for future tests and races.
“I think tomorrow is going to be one of the only races in my life where it will not be important my position. It doesn’t matter if I finish last being the slowest rider or I finish one or two positions in front. Actually, trying to finish one or two positions in front will take means I take much more risks and it’s not worth it with my physical conditions.
“I just have the mindset to go there, take it like a practice and get used to the bike whilst I can. It will be very difficult to finish the race with my conditions, it’s going to be very long and tough race, but this is my mission, let’s see if I can do it.”
As a three-time MotoGP World Champion, Lorenzo admitted he isn’t used to be finding himself at the back of the grid, despite rough stints with both Ducati and now Honda. Lorenzo admitted that he needs to keep reminding him why he finds himself where he does, as to not get disheartened.
“This is, together with the pain, the worst thing now this weekend. I am not used to stay in last position,” he said.
“But it’s also true I am the only rider on the grid that is having such a bad physical situation. So I always need to listen in my mind to not overcome my limits and risk for nothing. Try to ride, to make laps, to be able to work the muscles, as a MotoGP bike is always the best training for the muscles and I need this training for Misano test in four days and especially for Aragon race.”
Even after sitting out the last eight weekends, Lorenzo is still somewhat from being back to his best. When exactly that is, even he isn’t sure.
“I don’t know,” he said. “There is this ten percent now where logically I am not pushing a little bit more. I am at the limit of the bike as for me the priority is not to crash with this physical condition.
“I guess in Aragon I could stay more quiet, but in case of new crash the injury would not get worse, and I could push a little bit more. My muscles will be better and I will have more bike feeling, but obviously we require some races.”