Head of DORNA (Managers of the Motorcycle World Championship), Carmelo Ezpeleta, has broken the silence about Jorge Lorenzo’s situation. Ezpeleta is one of the most authoritative voices of the Championship, not only for his position and experience but also for his close relationship with the pilots.
A personal friend of the Spanish champion, Ezpeleta has declared his genuine distress at seeing a three-time world champion at the bottom of the standings. In a statement to the press, he declared how he hates “seeing a guy as good as him (Jorge) finishing in the nineteenth position”.
DORNA’s CEO has also wanted to make clear that he does not blame the pilot’s effort and commitment on the track. Rather, he thinks it all has to do with the very serious injury – and its consequences – suffered by the #99 in Holland, where he fractured several vertebrae. He has also urged his friend to address the issue:
“If it turns out that after the last accident in Assen that all is not well, you have to consider what to do and decide whether to stop racing or whatever. I think Lorenzo has to make a decision. I get along very well with him, I like him very much, but he has to think about what he wants to do with his life. If it turns out that what happens is that his back hurts so much, then that’s it”.
Carmelo thinks that Jorge should really consider whether or not he can again be the pilot he was before arriving at Honda… or if, on the contrary, the time has come to retire. Ezpeleta’s are the bold and sincere words of someone who really cares about Jorge Lorenzo.
“Jorge must start thinking about whether he can recover and become the Lorenzo we all know, or else he doesn’t, for himself and for the championship”.
Ezpeleta has also reflected on Lorenzo’s past and present attitude: “I am convinced that if the Lorenzo who raced in Assen 2013 after surgery on his collarbone explains what he is doing now, he would not understand. It makes me sad to see him like this.”
A nightmare called Honda RC213V
Nobody could imagine when Jorge Lorenzo arrived in Honda that the RC213V would be a beast that only his teammate Marc Márquez would ever be able to tame. It was also impossible to foresee that the temperamental nature and violent ways on the bends of such a powerful machine, would get in the way of the driving style of the #99.
The pilot from Mallorca, still convalescing from different injuries, realised at the pre-season that he had a long and bumpy road ahead. The Japanese missile became an enemy of the Spaniard. The evidence was there right from the beginning of the championship.
Unable to adapt to his new bike, Lorenzo lost confidence and he started getting results well beneath a three-time world MotoGP champion. His trip to the Honda factory in Japan was of little or no use.
In the middle of this crisis, he suffered a very frightening fall during the free training sessions of the Dutch GP. As a result of the accident, he fractured several vertebrae but thankfully he didn’t endure any life-changing injuries. Having missed just four races and without being fully recovered he returned to the track of Great Britain.
The pressure at the top of the competition is ruthless. Since then, the physical and psychological consequences left by the accident have prevented him from performing to his usual level.
His inability to even make it in the top ten or finishing less than half a minute behind the winner is having a very negative impact on his image. To make things worse for the Spaniard’s outlook, his teammate has said that the behaviour of the Honda for 2020 will not be very different from that of the current one. Lorenzo is therefore now waiting to see what happens on the pre-season testing at Sepang.
Images: Repsol Honda