CRUTCHLOW PLAYS WAITING GAME
Double 2016 race winner Cal Crutchlow has been left treading water at the Sepang test as he awaits the arrival of new parts for his LCR Honda.
He won't know what new parts or even which engine he will get for the 2017 season until factory riders Marc Marquez and Dani Pedrosa finalise the specification of their motors.
It was clear from the sound of the bikes that both Crutchlow and the Marc VDS duo of Jack Miller and Tito Rabat were not using the new 'big bang' machines that Crutchlow got an opportunity to test at the end of 2016 but instead the old 'screamer' engine.
And with no other new parts expected for the satellite teams, it looks set to be a case of no real progress for the British racer from the Malaysian test.
He said: "we've just been testing different configurations of engines. We'll just continue with some small items to test that are nothing to do with Honda, go through our list, and hopefully get some more track time, because everyone needs it."
And while Crutchlow's bike may not be progressing at the rate he wants it to, he's also struggling physically and was surprised to find that the finger he broke at the Malaysian Grand Prix back in October is in much worse shape than he expected.
He said: "I was going to have surgery on it at the end of the year but opted out because it was quite invasive. We put a lubricant injection into it instead and hoped that would work, and all winter it felt great. Then I started to ride again and itõs killing me.
"malaysia is special because of the braking, but itõs more the finger joint and the ligaments inside it thatõs causing the concern. I donõt know what the plan will be, because I need to speak to my hand surgeon and make a plan. Obviously, not having any surgery is better, but I need to know what weõre going to do. Hopefully thereõs something else they can do before they operate, because I donõt want to do that and lose time recovering."
Not much to test and a finger that’s still painful