Courtesy of MotoGP
One of CWM LCR Honda’s two new riders for 2015, Cal Crutchlow has been training in the U.S. over the winter break to prepare for the forthcoming season.
The Englishman gave motogp.com an update on what he has been up to over the last three months, commenting, “I went immediately after the last test in November to have an operation to take my collarbone plate out. I had some shoulder problems last year with arthritis, so I had to have the arthritis cleared out. It is still really painful but in the long run it will definitely be better. So I’m just trying to get some strength into that shoulder now in preparation for the season.”
He continued, “As always Lucy and I went to America for the winter and spent our time there. I mainly just cycle in the winter as I like to have some time off the motorbike. Sure that’s normally why when I come to the first Sepang test I’m not the fastest or up to speed because I have so long off the bike. I did a little bit on the motocross bike, not too much at all, but up to now I’ve probably done 4,500km on the bicycle, so it’s just like I always do! It seems to be the best training for me and the way my body works, I can lose some weight doing it and there is no impact on my knees from running. I have had a bit of tendonitis in my knee but now I’ve come back to the Isle of Man and it has cleared up quite well. That won’t affect me on the bike at all, it has just affected my cycling a bit.”
Looking ahead to the first test of the year in Sepang, which starts on 4th February, Crutchlow stated, “I always take the first test as a familiarisation exercise. Sure, once you are up to speed you can start to give good information to the team but I like to build it up over the three days and get my speed more than anything. You have to get your head around going 200mph again!”
On the challenge of riding with a new team this year and on adapting to the Honda RC213V Crutchlow is motivated by the hard work which lies ahead. Asked about how closely he expects his technical package to match that of the Repsol Honda factory riders over the course of the season the former Yamaha and Ducati rider stated, “My priority is to make sure I’m competitive and as close to the front as possible, then we’ll see after that.”
“Sure the bike is going to be a factory spec machine. You are never going to get exactly what Dani and Marc have got, because they are the factory riders, but you get close and you get enough, it was very similar when I was at Tech 3. You are always one step behind. But I’m excited to see what Honda bring out and they always bring out a fantastic motorcycle which is competitive.”
Regarding the arrival of Jack Miller in the premier class in 2015, Crutchlow believes it will be an interesting experience to share a garage with the young Australian – even if one or two practical jokes might be expected between the pair.
“Jack is going to be a force to be reckoned with in the next couple of years in MotoGP but it is a big step for him and I look forward to seeing how he gets on,” Crutchlow said. “I won’t be giving him too many tips because I think he can work it out for himself and he has already had more time on a Honda MotoGP bike than me. We know what he is capable of and I’m sure there is going to be a good atmosphere in our garage, with having Jack there and having me. I’ll think of a few practical jokes for him, but the first thing we need to do is shave his mullet off!”