Randy de Puniet says he was relieved to escape serious injury when he crashed on Jorge Lorenzo's oil and somersaulted into Ben Spies' bike in the gravel in German Grand Prix qualifying.
Both Spies and de Puniet fell when they hit the oil slick deposited by Lorenzo's failing Yamaha engine halfway through today's qualifying session at the Sachsenring, with de Puniet smashing into the front of Spies' Tech 3 Yamaha with his legs as he tumbled.
He was in significant pain afterward but did not suffer any broken bones and has been cleared to race tomorrow.
"What can I say? I am lucky because all my bones are whole!" said de Puniet. "We have been working good with the new software and I was up there for the whole session.
"I was on my last lap on hard tire and was ready to come in to swap on soft ones but suddenly Jorge's engine blew up on the straight and after few seconds the surface was full of oil. It happened too quick and nobody had the time to react or to display the board. Spies crashed in front of me and I did the same onto his bike hurting myself heavily. After last year left ankle fracture I was seriously worried about my conditions but it's just a scratch of the right tibia. But it aches very much!"
De Puniet was still able to take seventh on the grid with the time he had set prior to the crash and hopes to stay up there in the race.
"Of course I won't be at 100 per cent for tomorrow but my race pace is quite good and will do my best to take as many points as possible," he said.
Spies was unhurt in the accident but his race bike was heavily damaged, and the American was only able to take 13th with his spare.
"The incident at the first corner was crucial," he said. "I'd just finished my stint and was pulling in at the end of the lap to start going for a qualifying time. All of a sudden I was on the ground and I hadn't really tipped in. I saw de Puniet's bike fly right past me and. I walked over to his bike and looked at the front tire and saw it had oil all over it so I knew there was nothing I could do.
"I'd only been riding one bike this weekend and that got tore up in the crash. The lap times on my number one bike I definitely had something in the bag for qualifying to go faster than I did. But the best I could do on the spare bike was match the times I managed on the number one bike.
"The one decent lap I was on at the end that would have put me a row ahead, [Alex] de Angelis crashed in front of me at the top of the hill and that just upset my lap."