With so much focus on steroid scofflaws these past few years, it’s tough to remember that professional athletes are often forced to dabble in performance-sapping drugs, too. Such is currently the case with Spanish MotoGP star Dani Pedrosa, who’s been racing on painkillers since badly injuring his hip in a nasty spill. And while the pills enable him to sit atop his bike without feeling terrible discomfort, they also fray his reaction time by a few milliseconds—and thus consign him to more mediocrity than he can handle:
“I’m feeling positive about the weekend and we’ll just have to see how it goes when riding starts on Thursday,” said Pedrosa. “My intention would be to ride without receiving any pain-killing injections because gradually they lose their effectiveness and they are not something I want to rely on – we’ll see how the feeling is when I start to ride.”
Pedrosa has been taking the medication since a ‘tankslapper’ moment at the Italian round of the World Championship at Mugello, although the required sensitivity, grip and movement onboard a MotoGP machine has been lacking due to the nature of the injections.
Best of luck to Pedrosa in getting off the hard stuff, and getting his mojo back. We’re pretty sure he’ll emerge triumphant—only a truly strong soul could come back from an epic crash like this.