Puig ‘worried, but this doesn’t change our approach’

Repsol Honda Team Manager Alberto Puig insists Honda continue to facilitate Jorge Lorenzo’s demands to get comfortable on the 2019 RC213V; “He will [miss] Sachsenring but hopefully be back for Brno.”

Puig ‘worried, but this doesn’t change our approach’

Alberto Puig has admitted Honda is “worried” by the repeated issues befalling Jorge Lorenzo but insisted the Japanese factory will continue to strive to make the Majorcan comfortable on the RC213V.

A frightening high-speed fall at turn seven toward the close of MotoGP FP1 sent Lorenzo sprawling through the gravel, a sequence that fractured his T6 and T8 vertebra and put him out of this weekend’s action, as well as next week’s German Grand Prix.

Puig confirmed the five-time world champion will remain in a protective cast for three-four weeks to aid the healing of Lorenzo’s back, but said there was no “affection of the nerve – this is good news,” he said.

Asked if he was starting to get worried by Lorenzo’s continued predicament, Puig responded: “It is not that we are starting to get worried: we are worried. But this doesn't change our approach. He is taking time to get used to the bike and we hope that he gets used to it.

“Anyway, all we can do from a Honda point of view is support him and try to do things that he requests and what he is asking for. This is the job that a professional team like HRC tries to do.

“He had a crash also last week in the Barcelona test and that time he was in pain in exactly the same area as he has the pain today. Today with this crash the thing got worse and he was complaining about the same area.

“They made some checks at the circuit and it looked OK for the x-ray point of view but we decided to take him to the hospital in Assen to make a more precise control of his vital organs and they found out that he has a vertebra – the T6 (and T8) – which is fractured.

“But fortunately, from what the doctor said it is in an area that is quite protected so there was no affection of the nerve. This is good news. He will have to be in like a cast or corset for three-four weeks. He will [miss] Sachsenring but hopefully be back for Brno.”

On the crash itself, Puig explained, “For me it is quite clear and we don't need a big explanation. He went into the corner quite fast than normal and he just crash. These things just happen.

“A crash is a human error, a mistake. All of the guys crash. Probably his approach to the corner was from a different angle. Frankly I have not had the chance to check the data. I’m sure it was something like this.”

Did Lorenzo’s recent fast crash while testing in Barcelona, which hurt his chest and back, have any impact on Friday’s injuries?

“Could be, we don't know. The doctor suggested that this break could have started in the Barcelona crash. Maybe today with the impact it went even worse. It could have started in Barcelona I don't know.

“[Before the crash] He was free but he has pain. This morning he confirmed that he was not comfortable but mentally he was ready to race. Sometimes mental and physical does not go together.”