Jorge Lorenzo has admitted a brief lapse in concentration was enough to cause the fall that put paid to his hopes of winning his first MotoGP race in Ducati colours at a soaking wet Misano circuit on Sunday.

As witnessed at each of the previous three rounds, there were signs of the Lorenzo of old in the opening six laps, the 30-year old sweeping majestically to an early lead, before setting about building a sizeable margin.

Starting lap seven, Lorenzo was already 4.5s clear of the chasing pack, headed at that time by Danilo Petrucci. However, it was around this moment that the five-time world champion’s mind drifted to matters other than what lay ahead on the treacherous 2.6-mile track.

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Lorenzo had wanted to select a different engine map, and as he considered this, he tipped into turn six. Soon he was “flying” in the air. “I couldn’t believe it,” he said, while acknowledging he had thrown away the “first chance” to score a victory since his switch from Yamaha machinery.

“Today, the track in the wet was a bit more tricky than normal,” he began. “I'm still understanding everything on the Ducati. So today, I just wanted to change the map on the electronics and this caused me a little bit to lose concentration in some corners.

“Especially in that corner, I made the change of direction a little bit quicker and not using the rear brake, with less pressure, and because the track was so critical that a small change to your riding makes a big difference, and I couldn't stay on the bike.

“So I crashed. It was over. A big pity because today we had the first chance to win with the Ducati, but we lost it. But it's a matter of time before another podium arrives, for sure, and maybe even a victory.

“I won some races like that in the past. I won in Jerez 2011 with 10 seconds advantage, something like that. In Le Mans 2012 with 14 seconds. Normally when I am leading the race, I am very good at managing this distance.”

Pressed to specify how the Ducati mapping settings differs to those he was used to when riding for Yamaha, Lorenzo explained: “The system on the Ducat is a little more complex, so it's still not natural to me, because I usually don't change it too much within the weekend. So I'm still not completely adapted to all the possibilities, where I am, where I have to go.

“And this causes me to lose a little bit the concentration of riding, just sliding. That doesn't mean that I couldn't ride, or I went away from the track, but it's changing a little bit the riding in the change of direction, slightly faster and not using the rear brake so much and I completely lost the rear and I was flying.

“I didn't expect this crash, that the way I rode this change of direction caused me to lose the rear so aggressively. But it happened, and it's a big pity. I couldn't believe it when I was flying over. But when you are racing in the rain, this can happen.”

A frustrating DNF this may be, but Lorenzo can look back on the past four rounds – Brno, where he led before a strategy error, Austria, where he led the first part of the race and Silverstone, where he finished just 3.5s off the race winner – and see clear progress.

Even without today’s driving rain, the #99 feels he could have run with the leading group. “Obviously in the dry, we are not far, but also we are not the fastest with the best pace," he said. "But we are very close. And this weekend, I believe that in a dry race, we could stay there with the front group, a little bit better than in Silverstone.

“But it rained, and in the rain I knew I was really strong, because in the warm up I felt strong, I wasn't pushing, so in the race I felt even better. We made a modification which gave me a little bit more confidence, so just riding quite calmly I opened the gap, one second each lap.

“But I believe that this lack of concentration for this reason of the electronics caused me to crash. It was obvious that today you couldn't afford to have these things out of your control to survive. And I didn't have that. So we need to change this for the future, and next time, probably it won't happen again.”

The result drops Lorenzo to ninth in the world championship, 20 points back of Johann Zarco in sixth.

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It doesn't matter where Jorge is standing at present. Fact is the hard work he has been putting in to adapt to the red beast is slowly coming to fruition. Fantastic ride in the wet, and his starts are the best on the grid, it is only a matter of time before all the losers find something else to bag the man with.  2018 is coming and so is Jorge. 

It ain't a beast no more

A fantastic ride in the wet for 6 laps isn't much good when the race is 28 laps. We'll never know now whether he could have won, podiumed, fell off later on or anything else, but that was his best chance of a big result since Jerez.

Surprising to see such a schoolboy error from such an experienced rider, but there's probably a couple of podiums there before the end of the season if he doesn't have any more lapses.

There was something like 40 crashes this weekend.  Guess what? Every one of them was an experienced Grand Prix rider.  So to call it a school boy error is unfair.  Give Jorge some credit for just trying to be humble, and honest about why he thought he crashed.  Maybe he just lost the rear like a ton of other folks. He could of just said I wasnt doing anything different and I lost it...just happened.  He's a new guy this year, lots of positive attitude changes I believe, and yeah, its obvious hes coming.  He'll be there by the end of the season and hopefully a contender next season.  He's really impressed the heck out me this year.  Him, Dovi, and Aleix Espargaro have been great to watch for different reasons.

How many of those crashes were down to somebody losing concentration on several corners (by their own admission) by playing around with the electronics on a treacherous track, causing them to crash? He is by far the best and most experienced guy to crash on Sunday, and for a reason he admits was a silly one. Credit to him for admitting so but it's not unfair at all to call it a schoolboy error.

Good post, agreed

the move he made to take the lead was impressive. when he took the lead, I though he'll loss it but he kept on increasing his lead. I thought hmm that's strange it's raining and what's happening. it's a pity but it shows how long it is taking for him to get use to the Ducati. His not that familiar with the electronics control. Ducati must have a complex control system with too many options... typical European approach compared to Japanese simplicity. Also shows, in MotoGP a slight loss of concentration has a huge impact.

I've stopped listening to this silly little man's excuses. He is the proverbial pain in the ass. Not the first time he's used the, I lost concentration, line.

And yet you are still reading the story.

And what is a proper excuse for his crash then?  I don't think he could be any more explicit that it was his fault for the crash.

You folks complain more about him complaining than him actually complaining.

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