Laguna Seca : Gresini Honda – Day Two
Marco Melandri fought bravely through the final half of this afternoon's qualifying practice to secure tenth spot on the starting grid for the USGP after suffering a heavy crash at the start of the session.
With just nine laps
under his belt the Gresini Honda rider was negotiating turn four when he found Kurtis Roberts coasting on the racing line. Melandri was unable to avoid contact with the American, who was travelling at a very slow speed in the middle of the track.
Marco jumped off his bike at high speed before colliding with the air fences but the fall still left him with a twisted left ankle and multiple contusions. After a quick check in the medical centre, where the staff confirmed there were no broken bones, Marco returned straight to the pit box and fought through the pain to get back on track and qualify on the fourth row of the grid for tomorrow's race.
MARCO MELANDRI (10th, 1'23"018):
"I'm gutted this has happened because I had a good feeling with the bike and a front row start was within our capability. I was fourth fastest when I ran into Kurtis, who was going unusually slow. Despite the pain I wanted to get back on track. It was tough to get through the left-handers and change gear, especially uphill. Tomorrow will be tough.
Now I just want to focus on recovering as well as I can with the help of the Clinica Mobile".
MIGUEL DUHAMEL (19th, 1'23"923) :
"We're working hard and for me this is like a continual test. We're improving every time we go out. At the end of the session I tried a qualifying tyre for the first time and improved my time a lot so now my target is to have a consistent race. I'm really enjoying the whole experience."