The Austin weekend was particularly tough for Danilo Petrucci. The KTM driver found himself at the bottom of the group practically always and even in the race he was unable to go beyond the 18th place, with only the convalescent Franco Morbidelli behind him.
The many holes on the bottom of the Circuit of the Americas have amplified some of the problems of the driver from Terni. Given his size in relation to the very minute dimensions of the RC16, “Petrux” always uses a long bike to distribute the weight as much as possible. In this way, however, he found himself having to deal with a rather rigid set-up, which did not marry too much with the bumpy bottom of the Texan track, and in fact in the last laps he accused a back pain that prevented him from attacking the points area. .
“I tend to anchor myself to the bike with my legs, so I usually don’t struggle with my arms and shoulders, but I got stuck with my back, so I couldn’t move on the bike in the last five laps and I became very stiff. . The fact is that we slipped a lot compared to practice, so I was even more tense and anchored to the bike “, explained Petrucci after the race.
“I really struggled, but I knew it would be like that, so I took my step. At one point I got close to the points, but then in the last five laps I had to give up because I couldn’t really ride anymore.” , he added.
To console Danilo, however, there is the program that awaits him in the coming weeks, given that his approach to the Dakar 2022 will come to life, starting with a navigation course that will follow in Barcelona before the next MotoGP round.
“Before Misano I will go to Barcelona for a course, with Jordi Viladoms, who is the KTM team manager and has a school where you learn the regulations and everything you need for navigation. It will be two days of theory and two days of practice, so they’ll teach me most of the things there is to know and then I’ll get to Misano directly from Barcelona. “
After the Grand Prix of Emilia Romagna and of Made in Italy, he will then have the opportunity to touch for the first time the KTM 450 Rally with which he will be engaged at the beginning of January in Saudi Arabia.
“The first test on the bike, on the other hand, will do it before Portimao, and that will be in the desert. We still have to define this a little bit, but I think I’ll go two or three days to Dubai before Portimao. But then there will be two demanding MotoGP races. , so the real training will start after the end of the championship “.
Valentino Rossi, Petronas Yamaha SRT, Danilo Petrucci, Red Bull KTM Tech 3
Photo by: Dorna