Ducati’s Enea Bastianini suffered injuries in a five-bike pile-up at the start of the Catalunya MotoGP, preventing him from competing in upcoming races in Italy, India and Japan. When the Italian miscalculated his braking while attempting a tight inside line into Turn 1 for the first time, he collided with Johann Zarco and then wiped off Marco Bezzecchi, Alex Marquez, and Fabio di Giannantonio, all of whom were riding Ducati bikes. Pecco Bagnaia, who suffered injuries in a separate accident further around the turn, was also taken to a hospital together with Bastianini for evaluation. Bastianini had surgery to fix a fractured malleolus (an ankle bone) and a complicated fracture of the second metacarpal (a bone in the hand). Ducati Corse said Bastianini's operation went well, but the Italian rider won't be able to compete in the next races on September 10 (Misano World Circuit - San Marino), September 24 (India), and October 1 (Japan).
MotoGP: Michele Pirro to Replace Enea Bastianini
The racing weekend of the Catalan Grand Prix did not go according to Ducati rider Enea Bastianini's initial expectations. While slowing down for turn one on the first lap, the Italian rider crashed. Unfortunately, his first lap mishap forced him to leave the Grand Prix right away. The accident initiated by Bastianini resulted in a subsequent collision involving a total of five riders.
The accident between Enea Bastianini and Pramac rider Johann Zarco was a result of the actions taken by Bastianini on turn one of the Grand Prix. Consequently, a further collision occurred involving Fabio Di Giannantonio, Alex Marquez, and Marco Bezzecchi. After initial examinations at the clinic, Enea was moved to a hospital for further examination. It was thought that there were fractures, and sadly, that assumption was correct.
Meanwhile, Michele Pirro, a test rider for Ducati, has said that he would take over for the number 23. He will compete in a wild card event with the Aruba squad at Misano but will represent the official squad in India and Japan.
Bastianini had already missed the first five races of the season due to a fractured shoulder sustained in a crash with Luca Marini during the sprint race at the Portuguese GP, so this will be his second extended absence of the year. After Bastianini's two podiums on the underdog Avintia Ducati in 2021 and his nail-biting battle with Bagnaia last season, his absence at Misano will be a tough pill to take.
Michele Pirro's Career
Michele Pirro is regarded as one of the most experienced riders inside the paddock. He has raced successfully in practically every racing division. The Apulian individual achieved victory in the European 125 GP Championship in the year 2004, thereafter attaining success in the Italian Championship on nine separate occasions. Michele Pirro has achieved the prestigious title of national champion on nine separate occasions while representing the Ducati team. Notably, they secured victories in both the Superstock and Supersport categories in the years 2007 and 2008, as well as in the Superbike category in 2015, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2021 and 2022.
While competing as a wild card for the Aruba.it Racing team in the 2022 Italian MotoGP Grand Prix and the 2022 Catalan GP at the Montmeló circuit, Pirro raced a Desmosedici GP with the team's colours. The rider from Apulia demonstrated exceptional performance on the Panigale V4R motorcycle, representing the Barni Racing Team, leading to his attainment of the Italian Superbike Championship for the sixth straight time.