There’s only one thing left to say about Jorge Lorenzo’s 124 mph crash during a rainy practice session last Thursday while warming up for the TT Assen: It could have been a lot worse.
The images are horrific, but thanks to groundbreaking protective gear, Lorenzo walked away with only a collarbone fracture and a heck of a tale to tell. Today, Alpinestars released a trace graph analysis of Lorenzo’s spill, thanks to data collected from his TechAir airbag suit.
The graph shows the g-force time series of the data streamed by the upper body sensors in the Tech Air suit. A change in the strength of the signals is noticeable at the start of loss of control. The movement of the bike due to loss of rear tire grip causes a cluster of unusual spikes, causing the airbag to deploy at 0.220 seconds after the initial loss of control — the instant Lorenzo gets launched into the air.
The first impact on Jorge’s body, absorbing the initial kinetic energy of the crash, is registered for the left arm. The data trace, which was streamed by the left arm accelerometer, shows that touchdown on the track occurred 0.605 seconds after the airbag deployment. Impacts to both shoulders and torso followed.
Valentino Rossi won the race, but for Lorenzo, his risk to race with a titanium plate and eight screws holding together his broken left collarbone paid off with a valiant fifth-place finish. In a race in which many thought he should have been a spectator, Lorenzo tallied 11 points toward the championship chase – points which could be critical after his main title rival, Honda’s Dani Pedrosa, finished only fourth.
Lorenzo arrived in the Netherlands in second place in the championship after winning the previous two races. After the crash, it was feared Lorenzo’s quest for a third straight title was history. Incredibly, after Sunday’s race Pedrosa holds just a nine point lead over Lorenzo. Honda’s Marc Marquez sits in third, 14 points behind.
Next race: Thursday at Qatar.
– Jorge Lorenzo high-side accident: MotoGP FP2: Assen – Thursday, 27th June 2013, 2.30pm – Between turns 12 & 13