Despite a promising appearance in FP1, Andrea Iannone will take no further part in the Grand Prix of Aragon, as he feels competing throughout a full race weekend would jeopardise his chances of being fit for the upcoming races.
Iannone finished Friday morning's session sixth fastest but admitted soon after that it was “very difficult to control the bike 100 percent.” His fast time papered over the need for brief recovery breaks between stints on the bike, something that would be possible on Sunday.
What's more, the 27-year old feels continuing would only worsen his physical condition, whereas time off the bike will allow him to work on his recovery for the three flyaway races.
“About the first practice I felt not so bad,” he said at lunchtime on Friday. “The feeling with the bike was very good. Also with the track, I ride very well. I ride fast. I didn't change the tyres at the end. I think with the used tyres I had a good time. This is very good. I had a good base.
“Unfortunately I don't have good energy to ride for a long time. The race is 23 laps and after three or four laps it's necessary to come back to the box to recuperate the condition, relax a little bit, and relax after five minutes.
“I have a lot of pain, especially in the braking point and the acceleration. Also in the change of direction. On the bike it's very important point. We use the body a lot and at the moment it's very difficult to control the bike 100 percent.
“I think this situation is very difficult for the race. For sure with painkillers it's better. But I think after the race, after Sunday, the situation would be worse. I prefer to stop and start the recovery with my personal trainer from Monday.”
Iannone is optimistic that the two week-gap between Aragon and the next race in Japan will be sufficient time to recover to race.
“I think yes. If I ride all the weekend I think not. But if I stop now my situation will improve, not get worse. If I continued this weekend after Sunday my situation is worse than now because I'd push a lot with my back, and have the inflammation. This is definitely worse for the future.
“At the moment it's very important that I use the head. I'm 100 percent focussed on my recovery and I'm 100 percent focussed to be ready for the next race.”
Ducati test rider Michele Pirro will take Iannone's place for the rest of the weekend.