Bagnaia “can’t understand” Nakagami’s Barcelona Turn 1 smash

Ducati’s Francesco Bagnaia says he “can’t understand” why Takaaki Nakagami ended up triggering the multi-rider crash at the start of the MotoGP Catalan Grand Prix that took both out.

Fabio Quartararo, Yamaha Factory Racing leads, Takaaki Nakagami, Team LCR Honda and Alex Rins, Team Suzuki MotoGP crash, Francesco Bagnaia, Ducati Team behind

Bagnaia started from second while LCR’s Nakagami came from 12th, with the latter losing the front under braking for Turn 1 at the start of Sunday’s race as he tried to recover positions.

Nakagami struck the rear wheel of Bagnaia’s Ducati with his face, which sent the Italian into a crash, while the Japanese rider’s Honda also wiped out Suzuki’s Alex Rins.

Rins suffered a fractured left wrist while Nakagami had to be kept in hospital overnight for precautionary checks.

Race Direction deemed the crash as a racing incident, which incensed Rins and sparked debate among the other riders.

Bagnaia was unscathed in the incident and says he is “disappointed” with what happened, and branded it “not acceptable”.

“I’m not angry, I’m just disappointed,” Bagnaia said afterwards.

“First of all I’m glad that Taka is ok, because the crash was heavy. But I’m not angry with the race direction to don’t do nothing to him because he always does something like this.

“But from a professional rider like he is, you cannot expect to crash in the first braking in the first lap when he was 12th and he was trying to overtake 10 riders in the first braking.

“He was crossing the line of a lot of riders, and if I was not there he would surely have been on the gravel and his race was already finished.

“So, I can’t understand what he was expecting to do in this braking.

“But maybe when he is back – I hope he will be back soon – I will ask to him this.

“We are speaking always about safety, about how Moto3 riders are dangerous.

“But in the last races, with the slipstream and the groups in the qualifying, with this type of crash – because in Mugello and here we saw the same rider make more crashes – it’s not acceptable.”

Francesco Bagnaia, Ducati Team crash

Francesco Bagnaia, Ducati Team crash

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

Bagnaia is now 66 points adrift of Barcelona race winner Fabio Quartararo, but believes he still has “possibilities” to fight for the championship in 2022.

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“I was determined to recover 70 points last year in five races, so I’m still determined now to recover 66 in more than five races,” he said of his title hopes.

“But for sure the possibilities are lower. But still we have possibilities, so I will try."

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