The injured MotoGP riders came through with flying colors during morning warm up. Factory Yamaha rider Ben Spies was fastest man of the day, looking very fit despite a massive highside yesterday which left him black and blue. Spies leads from Dani Pedrosa and Jorge Lorenzo. After being cleared fit by the circuit medical staff, Casey Stoner tested his ankle during warm up, and looks set to race after taking 6th spot with a time just six tenths off the pace of Spies.
Casey Stoner Diagnosed With Torn Ligaments And Fractured Bones, Cleared For Indianapolis Race UPDATED
Casey Stoner has been diagnosed with torn ligaments and fractured bones in his right ankle, after suffering a massive highside in the first few minutes of qualifying for the Red Bull Indianapolis Grand Prix on Saturday. Stoner fell very heavily on his right ankle, and was taken to the medical center for evaluation, before being sent on to the Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis for further evaluation. There it was determined that Stoner has torn several key the ligaments on the inside and outside of the ankle, as well as small bone chip fractures and a larger fracture on the talus, the bone that sits between the tibia and fibula leg bones and the rest of the bones in the foot. Stoner also suffered a high ankle sprain and has swelling in the tissue surrounding his ankle.
Stoner was discharged from the hospital with his foot strapped, and is to decide on whether he is able to safely ride in the morning, local time. Given the severity of his injuries, this will be difficult, as it is usually impossible to put weight on an ankle which has been so severely damaged. Ligament damage in the ankle also takes a long time to heal - in ordinary circumstances, several weeks at least - leaving Stoner facing a monumental task to defend his title. Whether Stoner is able to ride at Indianapolis remains to be seen, and from there, his condition will be assessed further.
IMS Press Release: 2012 Indianapolis Qualifying Press Conference - Pedrosa, Lorenzo, Dovizioso, Espargaro And Cortese Speak
Below is the transcript of the press conference held after qualifying at Indianapolis, featuring MotoGP front row rider Dani Pedrosa, Jorge Lorenzo and Andrea Dovizioso and Moto2 and Moto3 polesitters Pol Espargaro and Sandro Cortese:
Press releases from the MotoGP teams after qualifying on Saturday at Indianapolis:
Press releases from the Moto2 and Moto3 teams after qualifying at Indianapolis:
After the mass of crashes during qualifying for both the MotoGP and Moto3 classes, the toll taken on the field is not as bad as at first feared. In MotoGP, Casey Stoner, Nicky Hayden and Ben Spies all suffered massive highsides in Turn 14, one of the final corners before the front straight. All three had the rear slide and then grip on the treacherous asphalt in that section of the track, and were flung off and came down heavily. Casey Stoner came off with the worst physical injuries, tearing the ligaments in his right ankle, while Nicky Hayden suffered a concussion and bruising to his arm. Ben Spies came off best, badly bruised and marked but otherwise unhurt.
All three men were taken to the Indianapolis Methodist Hospital for further examination, with Ben Spies being the first rider to be released back to the paddock. Spies is likely to race on Sunday, his injuries not being sufficiently serious to prevent him. The same cannot be said for Nicky Hayden: the factory Ducati man had a CAT scan on his head and his arm x-rayed. The Kentuckian was insistent he will race, but will not be able to race tomorrow after two fractures were found in his right hand. Hayden had also shown signs of confusion when he arrived at the medical center, having no memory of the crash and believing he had crashed at the same time as Casey Stoner.
Results and summary of qualifying for the Moto2 class at Indianapolis:
2012 Indianapolis MotoGP Qualifying Practice Result: New Pole Record Taken In Session Marred By Crashes
Results and summary of qualifying for the MotoGP class at Indianapolis:
Results and summary of the qualifying practice for the Moto3 class at Indianapolis:
Pol Espargaro has once again taken the top spot during FP3 for the Moto2 class at Indianapolis, completing a clean sweep of free practice at the iconic American track. Espargaro was chased hard by Marc VDS Racing's Scott Redding, though, the young Briton getting to within six hundredths of Espargaro's time. Marc Marquez ended in third, less than a tenth behind Espargaro but unable to challenge the HP Tuenti Kalex rider for the lead. Takaaki Nakagami of the Italtrans squad took the 4th spot, ending just ahead of Redding's teammate Mika Kallio, while Andrea Iannone finished FP3 in 6th.
The reign of the Repsol Hondas at Indianapolis continues, with Casey Stoner setting the fastest time in the final session of free practice for the MotoGP class, finishing just ahead of his teammate Dani Pedrosa. The race lap record continues to be decimated, Pedrosa taking first blood, while Stoner eventually got the time down to 1'39.182, six tenths faster than the race lap record and three tenths off the pole record.
Ben Spies put in another strong session of practice, setting the 3rd fastest time on the factory Yamaha, while Stefan Bradl is once again outstanding on the LCR Honda, also getting into the 1'39s and taking 4th spot. Monster Tech 3 Yamaha man Andrea Dovizioso ended the session in 5th, unable to get into the 1'39s but still within a second of Stoner, and ahead of San Carlo Gresini's Alvaro Bautista in 6th. Jorge Lorenzo had a difficult session, the factory Yamaha man and championship leader ending the morning session in 7th, well over a second behind his title rivals Casey Stoner and Dani Pedrosa, and just ahead of his teammate for next year, Ducati's Valentino Rossi. Cal Crutchlow had a similarly tricky session, ending FP3 in 9th and suffering a small crash at Turn 4, missing the final few minutes of the session, while Nicky Hayden rounded out the top 10.
The Red Bull KTMs continue to dominate at Indianapolis, Sandro Cortese setting the fastest time in the final session of free practice for the Moto3 class, finishing over a third of a second ahead of his teammate Danny Kent. Maverick Vinales leads the FTR Honda charge, finishing a tenth off the pace of Kent, but nearly half a second slower than Cortese, while Alex Rins continues his impressive debut at Indianapolis with the 4th fastest time.
2012 Indianapolis MotoGP Friday Notes: The Love-Hate Relationship For Indy, And How Hondas Love Going Left
MotoGP has a love-hate relationship with the Indianapolis Motor Speedway: most of the paddock love the place, the rest hate it. The way those feelings are divided is what is really interesting, though: the admirers of the track include most of the media, the teams and many, many fans. Those that hate the track are a small but well-defined group: anyone either wielding a camera or a racing a motorcycle have very few kind words for IMS.
So why the schism? It really depends on what you are doing at the track: the circuit has some of the best facilities of any circuit the MotoGP circus goes to all year, and making the life of the media, the teams and the fans exceptionally easy. The photographers, on the other hand, hate the track because of the fences. As a circuit that mainly hosts car races, there are high chain-link fences all around the circuit, to prevent debris from wrecked four-wheelers from flying into the spectators. At a few selected spots on the circuit, there are openings in the fences for photographers to poke their lenses through, giving them an unobstructed view of the circuit. There are lots of photographers and relatively few camera holes, leaving gaggles of photographers gathered around the available shooting spots like narwhals around a breathing hole in the arctic icesheet.