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MotoGP San Marino GP

Bagnaia “never thought about retiring” from Misano MotoGP round despite pain

MotoGP championship leader Francesco Bagnaia says he “never thought about retiring” from last Sunday’s San Marino Grand Prix at Misano despite struggling with his injured leg.

Francesco Bagnaia, Ducati Team

The factory Ducati rider’s right leg was badly bruised when KTM’s Brad Binder ran over it in a horrific incident on the opening lap of the Catalan GP one week ago.

Bagnaia was cleared to compete at his home GP and managed to scored third-place finishes in both the sprint and Sunday's full grand prix, albeit having his points lead cut to 36 from 50 by double winner Jorge Martin.

Ducati factory rider Bagnaia had to be helped off his bike at the end of the grand prix by his team, but says he had no thoughts of pulling out of the race despite his fragile physical condition.

“I never thought about retiring,” the reigning world champion said. “I was struggling more when I was in Team Italia in my first years in Moto3, that was more difficult.

“I risked to retire more in that day. But I was knowing what to expect for the race and I just worked a lot on the medical side with my trainer, with my physio to be ready for the race.”

Marco Bezzecchi of VR46 Ducati also came to the San Marino GP carrying an injury, after hurting his hand in the Turn 1 pile-up instigated by Enea Bastianini at the Catalan GP.

Bezzecchi took runner-up spot in both races at Misano, but conceded it was “tough to come here and expect a lot” as his relatively small injury “created a lot of pain”.

Marco Bezzecchi, VR46 Racing Team

Marco Bezzecchi, VR46 Racing Team

Photo by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images

“It was a fantastic weekend,” Bezzecchi added. “Going through all these struggles with the hand after the crash in Montmelo, where I could have done a good race, it was tough to come here and expect a lot.

“I worked a lot at home to try to recover the best that I could. And even if the injury is nothing crazy, I have to say that it’s creating a lot of pain.

Insight: 10 things we learned from the 2023 MotoGP San Marino Grand Prix

“I don’t know why. So, it was tough. I gave my all to try to give the fans a victory, but it was not possible.

“Jorge was fantastic and this was the maximum I could do. So, I have to be very happy and very proud of what I’ve done.”

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