Marc Márquez will return to competition this weekend at the MotoGP French GP, the 1,000th event of the Motorcycle World Championship since its premiere in 1949 on the Isle of Man. After almost seven weeks and three races off since his accident in the opening Grand Prix of the season in Portugal, the driver from Cervera will get back on the Honda at the Le Mans circuit. “I am very happy to be back with the team, ready to ride my bike again. First of all, I want to thank my medical team for their professionalism and advice during the last weeks”, explains the eight-time world champion.
The pilot underwent a medical check-up this Tuesday with his trusted team in Madrid and found “a notable improvement” in the consolidation of the fracture in his right thumb, a sensitive injury that if it did not heal well threatened his future in the elite. Unlike in the past, Márquez decided to take the most prudent path to heal the first metacarpal of his finger, missing out on the Argentine, United States and Spanish Grands Prix in the process after undergoing surgery the same day he suffered the injury in the Portimao circuit, on March 26. Since then, he has squeezed himself in the gym and in rehabilitation, with constant magnetic therapy sessions and more than two hours of use of a hyperbaric chamber to speed up recovery.
“Of course, as a driver you always want to be back as soon as possible, but with an injury like this it was very important to let it heal. Now I’m here and I’m totally focused on driving, I don’t have to worry about the injury, since it’s completely healed”, says the Catalan. As already happened when he decided not to participate in the Spanish GP, three trusted medical teams -in Spain, the United States and Austria- analyzed the images of the bone and advised the pilot when making the decision to be in France. . “Based on the results of the evaluation, the three medical teams that were following the case have determined that the patient is fit to compete again in MotoGP this week,” says Dr. Ignacio Roger de Oña, from the Hand and Hand Unit. microsurgery at the Ruber Internacional Hospital in Madrid.
This will be Márquez’s 29th race since 2020, when he started his injury ordeal with a fractured right humerus in Jerez. Since then, the World Cup has held 57 events, so his benchmark has lost almost half of the events. His last win came at the Emilia-Romagna GP in October 2021.
The FIM considers its sanction fulfilled
The return of the eighth champion will be without conditions after weeks of uncertainty and battle in court for the sanction imposed by the contest commissioners after the action that caused his injury. In the third corner of the first lap of the Portuguese GP, Márquez locked the brakes of his Honda and entered so far behind that he could not avoid the Aprilia of Miguel Oliveira, who he took ahead of him. Both ended up on the ground and bruised, and after reviewing the incident, the judges determined that the man from Cervera was aggressive, putting his rival’s integrity on the track at risk.
The Honda benchmark immediately complied with the two long lap penalty imposed, which he had to serve in an Argentine GP in which he did not participate. When his loss became known, the commissioners amended the wording of the penalty to prevent his absence from exempting him from serving it. That correction was appealed by Honda and the pilot, who learned on Tuesday the final resolution of the case. The FIM tribunal considers that by not participating in Termas de Río Hondo, the pilot has already served his punishment. Consequently, he shouldn’t think about anything else but competing this coming weekend at Le Mans, where he arrives in 19th position in the standings with 7 points, 80 behind leader Pecco Bagnaia (Ducati).