MotoGP

Fernandez’s 2022 Mandalika MotoGP test ended by vision problems

The final day of pre-season testing ahead of the 2022 campaign beginning on 6 March in Qatar is currently ongoing at Indonesia’s new Mandalika International Street Circuit.

The session began at 9am local time (1am GMT) and will run to 5pm local time (9am GMT), with Honda’s Pol Espargaro currently fastest with a 1m31.060s as of 2:30pm local time.

Having completed just seven laps on Sunday, Tech3 KTM rookie Fernandez has been forced to pull out of the final day of testing due to vision problems.

The 2021 Moto2 championship runner-up had a 200km/h crash on Saturday at Turn 12 – which he described as his first “real” fall in MotoGP – and suffered a concussion.

Fernandez started to have double vision initially after the crash but that soon subsided, while he was left with bruising on his head.

The Spaniard was cleared to continue riding by MotoGP’s Clinica Mobile, but he crashed on his seventh lap after braking later than normal at Turn 8 due to him experiencing “no speed perception”.

After this, he was advised by doctors to stop riding.

“It’s very strange, but I have no speed perception,” Fernandez told Autosport.

“I don’t see well. I went to see the doctors and they told me to stop, that it wasn’t safe to keep riding.

Raul Fernandez, KTM Tech3

Photo by: Oriol Puigdemont

“The doctor put his finger in front of my face and was moving it from side to side. I could see the finger, but not the back.

“I slept well, but when I put on my helmet [this morning] I felt a lot of pressure in my head. It’s not worth going on like this.”

More from the 2022 Mandalika MotoGP test:

Despite missing the final day of running, Fernandez says he ends his first MotoGP pre-season happy and “ready” to race.

“We had a good winter,” he added.

“In Sepang we did more than 250 laps between the shakedown and the three days of testing.

“I feel good with the bike and the team.

“Here [at Mandalika] we couldn’t do a single fast lap, but I compare myself with the factory bikes and I’m with them. I’m ready.”


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