It wasn't Cal Crutchlow's fractured left wrist that prompted him to make a pit stop with 10 laps to go in Sunday's Andalucia MotoGP.

Instead, his over-compensating right arm had developed chronic arm pump, the resulting numbness in his hand almost causing the Englishman to 'whiskey throttle' off the track.

Crutchlow was in last place by the time he pitted, and planned to retire. But when told he was still in the points, the LCR Honda rider returned and 'cruised around' to confirm 13th place.

"I had arm pump from lap 5 until I finished the race," Crutchlow explained.

"Over the weekend I'd noticed it a little bit as well, I'm not using my left arm at all. I've got great grip strength, I've got no problem in the braking zone, no problems to move the arm and the muscles are working.

"It's not even tired, not sore. But my other arm is obviously compensating and I'm probably riding 95% with my right arm.

"After about 12 laps or something, I got what we call 'whiskey throttle' [no throttle control] and I nearly rode off the side of the track because I couldn't shut the throttle. It was getting dangerous, so that was why I decided to pull in.

"I didn't look at my pit board the whole race. I thought I was in 20th, so okay, the day's over. Then they said you're in a points-scoring position, so I went back out and just cruised round to get some points.

"In the end the problem was arm pump in my right forearm. It was as simple as that. And it was too hard to control the bike."

Crutchlow - who had suffered the wrist injury in warm-up the previous weekend, undergoing surgery in Barcelona on the Tuesday between the Jerez races – added:

"I've had the arm pump operation before and I've not suffered from arm pump really since. Maybe I've had it in one race over the last four years, but not to the extent of today. Nowhere near. And I had it after 5 laps today. And I didn't get it last weekend, whereas I've had it all this weekend.

"It's because of the compensation of riding with a broken wrist.

"Unfortunately, us bike racers will try and come back and race at any circuit. Obviously, if it was in a different country to where I had the operation, it might have been more difficult.

"But whether I should have ridden today or not, I managed to get some points."

Alex Rins, who dislocated his shoulder last weekend, finished tenth for Suzuki while world champion Marc Marquez was forced to abandon an early return from a broken arm after qualifying.

All three now have one weekend off before the Czech Republic Grand Prix at Brno.

 

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