MotoGP

Simoncelli/Pedrosa crash sequence

Reactions from the two following the collision at Le Mans

WITH all the eyes on his overtly aggressive riding style Marco Simoncelli did not attempt to shy away from his critics and ride cautiously at Le Mans, instead the Italian collided with Dani Pedrosa in a controversial crash.

In a walkthrough of the crash, Simoncelli passed Pedrosa and ran slightly wide coming onto the back straight, the Spaniard got a better drive out of the corner and edged ahead. Marco then outbraked the Repsol Honda of Pedrosa into the left kink, cutting across the front of Dani from the outside, the latter had nowhere to go and hit the side of Simoncelli and crashed.

With Pedrosa leaving the gravel-trap nursing his right shoulder, Simoncelli would regain composure and rejoin the track, continuing in second. What followed was the decision from Race Direction to penalise Marco with a ride-through penalty for an 'illegal passing manoeuvre'.

After overcoming the agony of the injury to his left shoulder and a glimpse of hope for the season, Pedrosa was diagnosed with a broken right shoulder at the circuit medical centre. Commenting post-race Pedrosa said: "I was having a good race, the goal was to ensure another podium and I had it in my grasp. But it counts for nothing. Simoncelli overtook me, I passed him back and I had the better line, he just came into me releasing the brakes and I could do nothing.

"I leave here with a broken collarbone and he with a ride through penalty, good for him! Yet again I come out worse off. We only just recovered from the nightmare of the last operation and now I’m hurt again. It is very unfair, I don’t deserve it" concluded Dani.

Simoncelli was more fortunate, with the gap that the front-runners had built up ahead of the rest he was able to return to the track in seventh position, quickly working his way to fifth at the flag in the closing stages of the race. He said: “I am unhappy about what happened, because a result that was within my reach was denied and above all because of the fact that Pedrosa is hurt."

The Italian would describe the crash from his point of view, "In my opinion the incident went like this: Pedrosa was having a bit of difficulty –I had pulled alongside him and passed him on the previous three laps. When he passed me back I was not intentionally trying to resist, and my telemetry shows that I got on the brakes at the same point as on previous laps.

"I think that he had hit the brakes well before the corner, and I found myself on the outside of him and in front on the entry to the corner. I didn’t want to back off, so I left him with a metre between myself and the kerb in order to go in. I saw that it was tight, so I tried to adjust my position. That was when he touched my back wheel and went down."

The Gresini rider continued, "I repeat that I am unhappy about it, and I want to avoid any controversy regarding penalisation, but I believe that my ride through was a result of all the talk over the past few days."

The paddock and the MotoGP world are divided in their opinions on the penalty to Simoncelli. What are your thoughts?

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