In what seems like a rash of rider injuries that are worse than originally thought, Sylvain Guintoli rode this past weekend at Donington Park with broken bones in his hand and ankle. The injuries were sustained when he crashed heavily in the World Superbike season-opening first race at Phillip Island, forcing him to sit out the second. At the time, doctors informed the Frenchman that he had broken no bones, though the crash injured his hand, ankle, and shoulder. After the season-opener, Guintoli returned home and began preparing for the second round of WSBK racing at Donington.
In England, Guintoli qualified fourteenth and finished eleventh in both Race 1 and Race 2. Meanwhile, teammate Jakub Smrz qualified fourth, finished second in the first race, and eighth in the second. However, Guintoli was in increasing pain throughout the weekend.
Guintoli explained, “I spent all of Monday trying to find out why I had so much pain during the weekend in Donington.” After some new X-rays and an MRI in Manchester (much like James Toseland, who sat out his home race with a previously undiagnosed wrist injury), doctors informed Guintoli that he has two fractures in his hand and a third in his ankle. Though none of the bones are displaced, the ankle fracture “is at risk of non-union,” said Guintoli.
The Effenbert-Liberty Racing Ducati rider continued, “This means I will have to wear a support for 10 days and get some rest. More exams will be made after the Assen race to make a decision about surgery or not.” Guintoli has two weeks until racing at Assen to continue recovering, then another three before the next race at Monza.