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Crutchlow Finishes Sprint in 18th after Challenging Motegi Super Saturday

Crutchlow Finishes Sprint in 18th after Challenging Motegi Super Saturday

Despite setbacks on the Saturday of the Grand Prix of Japan, the YAMALUBE RS4GP Racing Team continued their testing programme. Wild-card entry Cal Crutchlow finished the Sprint in 18th place, collecting useful data.

The YAMALUBE RS4GP Racing Team used the Grand Prix of Japan Saturday sessions to collect further data and analyse prototype parts. Due to a mishap in Q1 earlier in the day, Crutchlow was starting from P16 in the Sprint. However, as his main aim was to collect data to accelerate bike performance, the team still felt positive that the 12-lap dash would be of great value to Yamaha. The number-35 rider finished the contest in 18th place. 

Crutchlow found himself riding with Fabio Quartararo and Franco Morbidelli in the early stages before settling behind Quartararo in 18th place on lap 3. However, halfway through the Sprint, the Briton was handed a long-lap penalty for exceeding track limits, and he fell back to 19th place. With a large gap to the riders ahead and behind, he was unable to make up ground before the chequered flag. As Aleix Espargaró had retired from the Sprint with 4 laps to go, the Yamaha test rider finished in 18th place, 26.026s from first.

The YAMALUBE RS4GP Racing Team will be back in action tomorrow for Warm Up, held from 10:40 - 10:50 GMT +9, and the Race, which starts at 15:00.

Cal Crutchlow


"Today was a difficult day, a lot more than yesterday. We were trying to use the soft rear tyre for duration for tomorrow in Free Practice 2, which we completed in a good way. Then, unfortunately, in qualifying we had a technical problem with one of the bikes. We were unable to get the front wheel changed in time to be able to profit and make a good lap time for the qualifyings. I was optimistic that I could have been further up the grid for the Sprint and the Race tomorrow. In the Sprint, unfortunately, I took a long-lap penalty because I kept touching in the green, which I never had to do before in my racing career - to have to do a long-lap penalty. It was good to be able to get some race situation and understand the mistakes it caused in a race situation being around the other riders. So, we gathered some data, this is very important. But it was not the best Sprint, and hopefully tomorrow we can look at which package we will race and be able to get some more data for the future."

Kazuhiro Masuda

YAMALUBE RS4GP Racing Team Director

"It was the first time qualifying for our team and we had some trouble. It was unfortunate that it happened at such an important time, but we have to accept it now and improve on this matter for the future. As for the Sprint, it was a tough race for us and Cal. It was difficult to find a good balance between the new test parts. We found some negatives, but we also found some good things. We need to analyse the data very carefully and find the key to improving our bike for tomorrow and also already with an eye on bike development for next year."