Enea Bastianini pulls out of Spanish MotoGP

Enea Bastianini will not compete any further in this weekend's Spanish Grand Prix after pulling out of Free Practice on Saturday morning.

Enea Bastianini, 2023 MotoGP Spanish Grand Prix. - Gold and Goose

Enea Bastianini has pulled out of this weekend’s MotoGP Spanish Grand Prix following Saturday morning practice in Jerez. 

Bastianini rode on Friday in Spain and struggled to be inside the top 20, complaining of pain and a lack of strength in the shoulder he injured in Portimao at the end of March.

The Italian rider decided to see on Saturday morning whether it would be possible to continue, and some changes were made to his Ducati to try to make it more comfortable for Bastianini with his current physical limitations.

However, after only six laps in Free Practice on Saturday morning, it was decided that the pain was still too much and the strength still too little for Bastianini to continue this weekend, and so the decision was made to end his participation in the 2023 Spanish Grand Prix.

His retirement from the weekend means Bastianini will leave Spain still having not scored a point in 2023, nor having finished a race since his move to the factory Ducati team over the winter.

Bastianini’s injury came in the Portuguese Sprint, when he ran deep into turn five, and ended up in the wrong place at the wrong time when Luca Marini lost the front just inside the line of Bastianini, Marini’s crashed motorcycle cleaning Bastianini out. 

It was initially hoped that Bastianini would be able to return at the third round of the 2023 MotoGP World Championship in Austin, Texas, but a short test on a Ducati Panigale V4 S before the race in the US found he was still too weak. A similar test was conducted before this weekend’s Spanish Grand Prix, and it was determined that it would be possible for Bastianini to try to come back. 

Clearly, that was not the case. Instead, Bastianini will now target the French Grand Prix in Le Mans in mid-May to make his return. After France, there are three weeks before Bastianini’s home race at the Italian Grand Prix in Mugello.

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