Alonso forgot about rib injury during Chinese GP

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Fernando Alonso says that he forgot about his rib injury during Sunday’s Chinese Grand Prix as he finished 12th in his comeback race for McLaren.

Alonso was forced to miss the last race in Bahrain on medical grounds after sustaining a fractured rib and a small lung collapse in a crash at the season-opening Australian Grand Prix.

The Spaniard was declared fit by the FIA doctors in China, allowing him to finish 12th in Shanghai on Sunday as McLaren struggled for race pace.

Alonso reported earlier in the weekend that he was still dealing with a little bit of pain due to his fractured rib when in the car, but told NBCSN that it was not on his mind during the race.

“To be honest I felt a little bit worse today,” Alonso admitted.

“When I went to the grid, on the laps to the grid, I had a little bit more pain than the last couple of days, so I was a little bit worried on the formation lap.

“But then only now jumping out of the car I reminded myself about the rib.

“When I was in the race, I don’t know if it was the adrenaline, the competition, whatever – I forgot completely.”

Alonso felt disappointed not to have qualified inside the top 10 on Saturday, but admitted that McLaren lacked the race pace to score any points in China.

“Not totally happy obviously. We were expecting a little bit more, we were expecting to be in the points, but we didn’t have the pace today,” Alonso said.

“I think the safety car didn’t help. We chose to start with the prime tire and run a little bit longer, but that benefit was cancelled after the safety car because they were behind our rear wing immediately.

“To be honest, after the safety car we didn’t have the pace either to open the gaps, so we need to look at that.

“On the positive side, both cars finished the race so reliability keeps improving.”

Supercross: Talon Hawkins to debut in Houston in relief of Jalek Swoll

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Talon Hawkins, 19, will make his Monster Energy Supercross debut on a 250 this week in Houston, Texas as a fill-in rider for Jalek Swoll.

During the Anaheim 2 weekend, the Rockstar Energy Husqvarna team announced Swoll underwent successful surgery to repair a broken arm suffered in a practice crash.

That same weekend, Hawkins made some noise. He took the lead from teammate Casey Cohran on Lap 2 of the 250 SX Futures Main and led for three laps before he was overtaken by eventual winner Daxton Bennick. Cochran also got around him to push Hawkins to third.

This will not be Hawkins SuperMotocross professional debut, however; he made three Lucas Oil Pro Motocross starts last year with results of 19th at Spring Creek in Millville, Minnesota, 27th at Ironman in Crawfordsville, Indiana and a best finish of 17th in the season finale at Fox Raceway in Pala, California.

Hawkins also has a top-10 finish in the 125 All-Star division at Pala in 2019 riding a Husqvarna.

Speaking with RacerXOnline.com before the Loretta Lynn Amateur Nationals, Hawkins predicted his future with Husqvarna would come down to how he performed in that race.

“It all just comes down to how I perform at Loretta’s,” Hawkins said. “Say I do really well, I get a top three in both classes and do a pretty solid job, I would like to go pro and just kind of finish out the rest of the series. But there’s also the option of waiting a little bit longer, going back out to [Aldon] Baker’s [Factory] or going anywhere and training, and just being prepared. I’m also open to that too. Honestly, it’s whatever the team wants. Whatever we think is the best option is what we’re going to go with. So, I don’t really have a plan right now, just looking into the future.”

Hawkins finished third overall in the 125 B/C and Schoolboy divisions at the Loretta Lynn Amateur Nationals.