The three-time MotoGP race winner has been referred to as as much as exchange the injured Franco Morbidelli at SRT for the following three races having retired from full-time racing on the finish of final season.
Although now Yamaha’s official check rider, Crutchlow hasn’t ridden a bike since a check in April, which made getting again into the swing of issues on Friday in Austria all of the harder.
“5 months off, fucking hell, the whole lot feels alien,” Crutchlow mentioned after ending Friday 2.285 seconds off the tempo in final on mixed occasions.
“Sat on this chair with my leathers on feels alien not to mention using the bike.
“Handlebar positions, brake positions, the whole lot simply takes time to grasp.
“And clearly I rode the Honda for six years or no matter I rode it for, so my thought course of continues to be the sensation of that.
“Then I began to check with Yamaha, I understood the bike fairly properly, I made what I consider was fairly just a few enhancements in Qatar as a result of I had days on it.”
He admits his preliminary emotions at full velocity on the bike have been “not superb” and was lulled into pondering he was going quicker than he was.
“The very first thing I did at the moment, I bought on the bike and I let the clutch out [leaving the garage] however couldn’t flip sufficient and when the lock was on and I let the clutch out, my fingers touched the journey top adjuster.
“So, the fingers wouldn’t exit, so the bike was almost stalling and almost fell off it.
“I simply let go of the handlebar and the bike flew off. So, you may think about it wasn’t the best first lap.
Cal Crutchlow, Petronas Yamaha SRT
Photograph by: Gold and Goose / Motorsport Images
“The very best factor was, as at all times if you’re using round you assume you’re going quick, however the actuality is I’d as properly have had an orange bib on as a result of I used to be behind Jack [Miller] for the primary two laps and I used to be like ‘I’m staying with him, that is good, fucking nice’.
“Then two, three laps later I ran a bit extensive and so they went.
“However I felt like I used to be flying, however my lap time wasn’t working.
“However brake distance felt actually brief, bike was shaking, wheelie-ing popping out the corners. I assumed, ‘that’s it I’m positively going properly’, however the actuality was I used to be 5 seconds or one thing off the lap file.”
The Briton mentioned he was in a position to shortly get again right into a racer’s mentality in observe, which got here as a shock to him given his final race was November 2020.
“On the check you’re testing in opposition to your self, you’re your personal knowledge,” he mentioned.
“After which if you come again to the race weekend you need to take a look at the opposite riders’ knowledge.
“That stunned me, however honesty talking when a month in the past or 5, six weeks in the past once I mentioned I used to be going to do it, as I mentioned I didn’t care.
“However if you sit within the storage, I’ve that mentality of desirous to compete I suppose.
“I’m not going to be competing, I can let you know that now, nevertheless it felt humorous that I used to be even bothered, however fairly fulfilling.”