Players riding the Italian MotoGP 2015 with injuries
Four of MotoGP's most well-known riders will be racing with injuries this weekend.
Going into the Italian Motorcycle Grand Prix, which begins at Mugello in Tuscany, Italy on the 29th of May, several key players are nursing injuries sustained earlier this year.
Four key ones:
The 2014 World Champion injured his hand prior to the Grand Prix at Jerez. The Spaniard, riding for Repsol Honda, was practising alone on a dirt track near his home when he crashed and fractured a finger. Despite this, however, he went on to compete at Jerez and even finished with a podium – he was 2nd to compatriot Jorge Lorenzo, riding for Movistar Yamaha MotoGP.
Marquez has already won one Grand Prix this year – at Texas, and came in 4th at the MotoGP of Le Mans. He continues to ride with a titanium plate inserted into his finger.
Pedrosa, the compatriot and teammate of Marc Marquez, has had repeated arm pump issues, for which he underwent surgery earlier this year, in April. He faced severe problems from the issue, which saw him drop from 2nd to 6th in the MotoGP at Losail in Qatar, the opening race of the 2015 MotoGP season. He sat out a home MotoGP – the one at Jerez – due to his issues, but came back to race at Le Mans, ending in 16th spot. More importantly, however, he was able to complete the race. He echoed the sentiment: "Even though we didn’t get a great race result, the outcome from the weekend in Le Mans was positive!”
Describing his arm as “better than expected”, he said he was looking to “take another step” in Italy, acknowledging the “hard work” that needed to go into earning it. Like the others, especially Andrea Iannone, he mentioned not wanting to disappoint the fans at Mugello.
While testing at Mugello in Tuscany a few days prior the French MotoGP at Le Mans, Iannone of Ducati took a bad fall at one of the track’s high-speed corners – Arrabiatta 1. He went on to race at Le Mans, ending well in 5th, but had recurrent pain.
A recent scan revealed that Iannone had sustained a hairline fracture to his humerus (a bone in the arm), which was causing him the pain he felt. However, both Ducati and Iannone confirmed that he would race at Mugello, with Iannone putting out a statement stating he did not wish to ‘disappoint his fans’.
Espargaró suffered a crash at the MotoGP of Le Mans, the biggest of his career so far during the second practice for the Grand Prix. The crash came immediately after his tyre change, when the Suzuki Ecstar rider switched to softer tyres. The rear of his GSX-RR broke free, and Esparargó was launched into the air whilst riding at 200km/hr. He managed to win one of two transfer places in Qualifying 1 , moving on to Qualifying 2 to finish 10th of 12 riders. He was unable to complete the race, although his brother Pol finished high, at 7th.