The news that Yamaha has chosen not to continue with Jorge Lorenzo and instead sign Cal Crutchlow as its factory MotoGP test rider next season, prompted the following tweet from the five-time world champion likening the move to ‘exchanging gold for bronze’.
Correct. It’s like exchanging gold for bronze…
— Jorge Lorenzo (@lorenzo99) November 14, 2020
Crutchlow was asked for his opinion of that comparison after Friday practice for his final MotoGP as a full-time rider, at Portimao:
“At the end of the day I don’t really have anything to say to him. He feels the way he feels. I fully respect him as a racer, a five times world champion – he will tell you a lot that he’s five times world champion!
“He’s incredible as a racer and very, very special on the bike but that doesn’t mean he’s a great test rider. It’s as simple as that. So I think you have to take some things he says with a pinch of salt and get on.
“I’m sure it’s affecting him more than it’s affecting me, what he said. I can take it with a pinch of salt because it comes from a guy that walks around telling people things all the time.
“At the end of the day it’s no skin off my back. I’m happy. I have things to do, I have a family, friends and, you know, obviously he’s just bored at home.”
The Englishman was speaking after being 14th quickest for LCR Honda during Friday practice for the season finale.
“A really difficult circuit and especially difficult on the Honda I think, with the way the bike shakes, is unstable and wheelies a lot. But I felt quite positive out there, it was nice to get back out on a track I hadn’t ridden in 11 years,” Crutchlow said of his return to a track where he won the 2009 World Supersport title.
“I didn’t feel fantastic but not too bad. I’m disappointed with the final position because I made a couple of mistakes on the fast laps but overall a positive feeling. I think tyre wear is going to be the crucial point this weekend, understanding it and being able to manage it in a 25-lap race.”
Lorenzo is being linked with a possible switch to Aprilia as a MotoGP test rider for 2021.