After trying to ride on Saturday at Jerez, Marc Marquez has been forced to pull out of Sunday’s Andalusian Grand Prix at Jerez. The Repsol Honda rider rode reasonably well in FP3, and was passed fit after the session to continue.
But Marquez started to struggle in the afternoon. The reigning champion put in a stint of eight laps on his first run in FP4, but only went out for two more after that.
He attempted to ride in Q1, but came back in directly after his out lap, and walked out of the back of the garage and into the truck.
When he emerged from the truck wearing team clothing, his right arm, fractured last week and plated in an operation on Tuesday, was visibly swollen.
It was clear that Marquez would not be able to continue, and the Repsol Honda team announced he would sit out the race shortly afterward.
This is the first race Marquez will have missed in his MotoGP career. The last time he missed a race was at Sepang and Valencia, the last two races of 2011, after crashing heavily over water on the track, at a point where no yellow flags were being waved to warn the riders.
Marquez suffered nerve damage to an eye in that crash, but was operated on succesfully, and returned the next season.
HRC later released a statement from Repsol Honda team manager Alberto Puig:
“This morning the objective was to make first contact with the bike and we saw that Marc could still be fast. In the afternoon the plan was to do a longer run. Either due to the heat or fatigue from the morning, he experienced more problems and found it more difficult. Obviously we have understood that it was better not to take more risks. We have followed the plan, which was to miss Friday and see how Marc felt today. Now we have analyzed the situation and made the decision not to participate in tomorrow’s race. We have followed the plan, always checking the physical condition of the rider. Marc has tried to listen to his body, to see how he responded. When he saw that he could not, we have all decided not to race tomorrow. Marc is very strong. He wanted to try, and we wanted to give him the opportunity to do it, we have supported him at all times. I think we have made the right decision at all times. A champion cannot stay at home if he thinks he has the option or a slight chance. Now he has a lot of inflammation, but it will pass. There are many races ahead and the goal is to arrive in Brno in the best way.”
Source: Repsol Honda; Photo: MotoGP