Alex Lowes has been forced to make the 'devastating' decision to pull out of his home round at Donington Park as his injured left collarbone has been causing too much discomfort which would make racing unsafe.
The Pata Yamaha rider had passed all medical tests set by the World Superbike medical team but after suffering serve pain from his left collarbone at Donington Park the British rider has taken the difficult decision to withdraw from qualifying and both races.
Lowes broke his left collarbone in a heavy crash during the wet race two at Sepang two weeks ago and required surgery to fix the injury.
The 25-year-old was in a race against time to be fit for Donington Park but after being declared fit by the medical team after FP1 he jumped to fourth fastest after Friday's free practice sessions.
Pata Yamaha team boss Paul Denning says the decision had been made so much harder as he was confident of challenging for the podium this weekend in the hope of claiming the Japanese manufacturers' maiden rostrum since returning to World Superbikes this year.
“It is devastating primarily because he feels the bike is so good around this track and felt a podium challenge would be possible and obviously so disappointed not to be able to race in front of his home fans,” Denning told Crash.net
. “Safety has to be the priority.
“He believes the strength in his shoulder and ability to ride the bike has got worse every time he has gone out. Sometimes with injuries it can get better but the trauma around the operation site and in the shoulder has got worse and during FP3 he was unable to support himself under braking after three or four laps.
“When the bike spun and had a shake coming out of Coppice his left hand fell off the handlebar. You can't race against these guys with that. He doesn't want to put himself in further danger and is conscious of other riders.”
Looking to take positives from an already downbeat weekend, Denning is optimistic stand-in rider Cameron Beaubier can impress on his World Superbike debut having already surpassed initial goals by securing an automatic place in Superpole two.
“Beaubier is performing very well and is exceeding our expectations,” he said. “So let's see what he can achieve over the weekend.”
Beaubier is standing in for the injured Sylvain Guintoli who is recovering from a broken right ankle sustained in a heavy high-side crash during qualifying at Imola.