While the first day of practice at Le Mans was - unusually - a crash-free affair, day 2 got off to a bad start, with falls in the 125 and MotoGP classes, as riders pushed too hard on a cool track. In the MotoGP class, Ben Spies, Alvaro Bautista and Mika Kallio all had big crashes, both Bautista and Spies highsiding spectacularly.
Things looked worst for Spies, the Texan being stretchered off to the Clinica Mobile, but after inspection - and worries about a fractured metatarsal bone in his left foot - Spies was pronounced badly bruised, but healthy. Spies and Kallio are both expected to ride this afternoon, the injuries not serious enough to prevent them.
Alvaro Bautista was also lucky to escape relatively uninjured from his monster highside, merely banging up his ankle. But the Rizla Suzuki rider has decided that discretion is the better part of valor, and will be sitting out the rest of the weekend. Bautista has decided to give his injured shoulder a chance to rest and recover, rather than risk further injuring himself, and jeopardizing the busiest part of the season. Nobuatsu Aoki is here at Le Mans and could take Bautista's place, but the Japanese veteran and Suzuki test rider appears to have been ruled out of competing, as Aoki would only have limited practice time and would be using up an engine which Bautista may want to preserve for later in the season.