Niccolo Canepa's participation in the Australian Grand Prix is in doubt after the Italian required hospital treatment for a deep arm wound following his crash in practice today.
The Pramac Ducati rider went off at Phillip Island's first corner and burned through his leathers on the right elbow as he slid along the track. He has been taken to hospital in Melbourne for the cut to be cleaned and to check if the nerves and tendons have been damaged. A skin graft is also expected to be carried out.
Team boss Fabiano Sterlacchini said Canepa would have to give himself time to recover if necessary rather than struggling to race with the injury.
"We are very sad about what happened to Niccolo today," said Sterlacchini. "We have to wait and see how the operation will go. The doctors should make a skin transplant to close the cut. My only advice to Niccolo is to not have any hurry in these moments but stay calm and evaluate the situation of the injury well. The team is with him."
Canepa was able to walk away from the crash but realized immediately that he had injured his arm.
"I fell when I was in fourth gear at more than 200 kph and while I was sliding on the asphalt I burned my leather and so my right elbow got burned quite deeply as well," he said.
"I feel a lot of pain from the shoulder to the hand but it seems like nothing is broken. We have to go to Melbourne's hospital to clean and disinfect the cut. Only at that time we will be able to understand if a skin transplant will be possible. For Sunday's race we should know something more only after surgery."