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GP Week : Issue 7
n A long-standing rumour was finally laid to rest when BMW revealed their new candidate for the World Superbike series, to be available in 2009. The German company had been testing a GP-class bike, but consistently denied it was aiming for the top series. Seems it was telling the truth. n News of increasing eccentricity from Honda’s car plant at Swindon in England: Assembly staff have been banned from eating certain types of chocolate bar in their breaks. “They’ve barred things like fruit or any product with a biscuit base,” said an aggrieved union representative. What is this to do with motorcycling? Only that the new head at Swindon is Suguru Kanazawa, until last year president of HRC. n What goes up, what must come down … a German newspaper has been the first to publish pictures of “just-for-fun” bike racer Michael Schumacher having his first race crash. Schumi locks the rear wheel of his Honda at the back of a pack of other racers, with inevitable results. Schumacher has had to deny persistent rumours a future wild card GP rider. n Little by little, Australian Anthony West is gaining confidence on the Kawasaki, after a disastrous start to his first full year in MotoGP, after going back to new base settings for post-Estoril tests and lapping faster than in the race. “The times weren’t a vast improvement, but I could be smoother and had more confidence to push harder,” the ex-250 GP winner said. HIGH SIDES DAZZLING MotoGP rookie Jorge Lorenzo is going back to mother to help him get ready to race again in China, after surgery to cure a bad case of Racers’ Wrist in his right arm the day just 24 hours after his maiden victory at Estoril. “The biggest problem I have at the moment is that it’s quite hard to do things for myself, so my mother is going to have to look after me,” said the 20-year-old, before going to his London home to recuperate. The operation was performed on Monday afternoon in Barcelona by Dr Xavier Mir, head of arm surgery at the Institut Universitari Dexeus, and a familiar name in Spanish MotoGP circles for similar work done in the past. Mir said later he had operated on only one arm to save recovery time. Lorenzo has two weekends before the Chinese GP in Shanghai. Racers’ Wrist, arm-pump, compartment syndrome and tendonitis are different versions of the same problem of an over- stressed usually right arm, required to make delicate brake and throttle movements while withstanding the g-forces of braking and acceleration. The resultant pain and weakness get worse as the race wears on, but didn’t prevent a convincing win in Portugal. Lorenzo was confident of being able to take part in the race in China. “There isn’t so much time, but this is the last possible opportunity before the summer break without having to miss races. I have some time to recover, and I’ll be in China. Even if I have to ride with only one hand!” Mother's care for rookie Jorge 14