Marc Marquez has revealed he rode his final laps in MotoGP qualifying at Misano with a “small stone” in his eye from his high-speed Turn 15 crash in the closing stages.
Marquez was pushing to improve on his provisional second spot when he crashed going through Turn 15 with just over six minutes remaining of Q2.
He immediately made his way back to pitlane for his second Honda to complete the session, but took to the track without realising a piece of gravel had gotten into his eye.
As a result, he lost “concentration” on his final laps and made several mistakes, which meant he was powerless to lift himself out of fifth with his initial time of 1:32.016s.
He told BT Sport: “Yeah, of course I was so quick [to get back to the garage after crash] – maybe too quick, because then when I get to the other bike, I had something in my eye.
“I was just riding and I had a small stone in my eye, and then I was not concentrating for that reason.”
He added: “Yes, I'm still sweating. Of course, it was not so good a qualifying. Apart from that I feel really good with the bike in FP4, I feel really good in the qualifying.
“Yes, we crash, but I was riding well and this is the most important thing. The problem was with the last bike, the last run, I was not concentrating, I was not precise, I had a few problems there.
“I didn't improve the laptime, but for tomorrow I feel good, on the race distance we are good. We are managing the tyres in a good way, so this is the most important thing.”
Honda stablemate Cal Crutchlow, on the LCR-run RC213V, also crashed in qualifying, the Briton falling at the first corner on his final flying lap.
Admitting he was a “bit greedy” under braking in his pole charge, Crutchlow says sixth still meets his “objective” and is confident of being a factor in Sunday's podium fight.
“I went really long into Turn 1, made a mistake,” he said.
“Obviously I crossed the line with two seconds to go, and I wanted the pole position.
“But I outbraked myself immediately in the last lap and grabbed too much brake, I was a little bit greedy.
“Evidently I'm on the second row, but I'm happy with that position; to be on the front two rows is always the objective.
“The front row was definitely possible, but I never made it today. Our race pace and speed is good.”