Press releases from the MotoGP teams after the first day of testing at Sepang:
Marc Marquez will not ride at the Phillip Island test, scheduled for next week, and will only return to riding at the first race of the season at Qatar. After meeting with Dr Xavier Mir in Barcelona today, Marquez was told it would be better to rest and recuperate as fully as possible before attempting to ride a MotoGP bike again.
The decision to wait until the race at Qatar also settles a potential argument over testing at Phillip Island and Qatar. HRC had been contemplating sending Marquez to test with the satellite and Open class riders at Qatar, rather than the factory riders at Phillip Island, where they are testing tires for Bridgestone. Honda asked Race Direction for permission to allow Marquez to test at Qatar, but Yamaha and Ducati lodged an objection.
The split between factory and non-factory testing had been agreed at the end of last year, to give Bridgestone a chance to test tires, but Yamaha and Ducati feared that Marquez would gain an unfair advantage if he was allowed to test at Qatar just a week ahead of the season opener. If Marquez was to test at Qatar, Yamaha said, then Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi would test at Qatar as well, abandoning the tire test.
MotoGP returns to the track at Sepang in just a few hours, and the second test at the Malaysian circuit offers just as much intrigue as the first did. Interest at Sepang 2 centers on notable absentees, Ducati's plans, and progress made so far. There is much to watch in Malaysia.
One thing we know for sure. Marc Marquez will not be the fastest man at the second Sepang test. The reigning world champion dominated the first test at the beginning of the month, but a training crash saw him fracture his right fibula. Even in adversity, Marquez' luck held, the injury being relatively quick to heal, the bone not being displaced. He will definitely be back in action at the first race of the year in Qatar, and he could possible attend the Bridgestone test at Phillip Island early next week, but he will be forced to miss Sepang 2.
With Marquez out, others will have a chance to shine, though the question of how any times set would hold up if the Repsol Honda man had been present will remain. Nobody had an answer to Marquez' pace at the first test – especially when you compare his race pace on long runs – and his rivals will have to drop well under the two-minute mark to make an impression.
On the eve of the second MotoGP test at Sepang, the Drive M7 Aspar team held its launch at the circuit, presenting its new livery to the assembled press. Afterwards, they issued the following press releases, containing details of the team, the bike, and biographies of both riders, Nicky Hayden and Hiroshi Aoyama. The press releases and photos of the livery are shown below:
DRIVE M7 ASPAR TEAM PRESENTS 2014 LINE-UP AT SEPANG
Spanish outfit unveils its most international line-up yet at Sepang, with two former World Champions and new Malaysian energy drink DRIVE M7 on board as title sponsor
Press releases from the World Superbike and World Supersport teams after the first races of the 2014 season at Phillip Island:
Press releases from the World Superbike and World Supersport teams after qualifying for the season opener at Phillip Island:
Press releases from the World Superbike and World Supersport teams after the first day of practice at Phillip Island:
As the 2013 World Superbike season ended, the question was how the series, now owned by Dorna, could once more fill the grids. With some races rewarding every finisher with points, while the cheaper Supersport and Superstock championships raced with full grids, it was clear that more seats were needed.
One part of the solution was the new EVO class. Essentially Superbikes with Superstock engines, EVO bikes are much cheaper and, from 2015, will be the standard specification of all bikes, and over a third of the full-time entries in 2014 are EVO bikes, with familiar riders taking some of the seats. Another part of the solution was the addition of several new and returning manufacturers to the series. Alongside Ducati, Aprilia, Honda, BMW, Suzuki and Kawasaki, we now have MV Agusta, Buell and, hopefully, Bimota bringing the number of marques to nine.
Previews of this weekend's World Superbike season opener from the series organizer and some of the teams:
The Repsol Honda team have released the following press release, confirming that Marc Marquez has broken his leg in a training crash. No surgery will be needed on the leg, but Marquez will miss the Sepang test, and possibly the Phillip Island test as well:
Marquez to miss Malaysia Test
MotoGP World Champion, Marc Marquez, has broken his fibula during a dirt-track training session in Lleida, west of Barcelona, yesterday afternoon.
Marc was immediately taken to the Universitario Quirón Dexeus Hospital where Dr. Xavier Mir treated the spiral fracture of the distal third of his right fibula. After carrying out a CT scan and X-ray, Dr. Mir confirmed, “The results showed no ligament damage or dislocation and no need to proceed with surgery. I expect he will need 3-4 weeks to fully recover”
Catalunya Radio is reporting that Marc Marquez has broken his right leg in a training accident. According to well-informed radio journalist Damià Aguilar, Marquez suffered a crash while riding at his dirt track facility not far from his home in Cervera in Catalonia on Wednesday.
The accident – if confirmed, which seems likely – means that Marquez looks set to miss the second Sepang test at the end of this month. The 2013 world champion is reported to have broken his right fibula in the crash. That injury means he will be unable to train for at least 15 days. However, in most cases, a broken fibula can be fixed quickly and relatively well by inserting a titanium plate. With the start of the season still four weeks away, Marquez should be reasonably fit for Qatar.
Marquez has led something of a dirt track revival recently, building his own training track not far from his home. Dirt track is in favor with riders, as it teaches throttle control and allows them to keep race fit with relatively limited risk. Motocross, the other favored form of training, offers other risks due to the number of jumps and uneven terrain. However, Marquez' facility is said to be large enough for the riders to reach relatively high speeds, and crashing at such speeds can still result in serious injury, as Marquez has reportedly just found out.
Press releases after the second day of testing at Jerez for the Moto2 and Moto3 teams:
Press releases from the teams and series organizer after the final official World Superbike test at Phillip Island:
The Repsol Media Service issued the following press release on Alex Rins having surgery on his right wrist to have a cyst removed:
Alex Rins undergoes successful surgery on right wrist
2013 Moto3 World Championship runner-up goes under the knife at Hospital Universitario Quiron Dexeus in Barcelona, in procedure to remove cyst.
Alex Rins underwent a successful operation today at the Hospital Universitario Quiron Dexeus, carried out by Head of Hand Surgery, Dr. Xavier Mir. The procedure was performed to remove a synovial cyst hidden in the schapholunate of Rins’ right wrist. The cyst also formed part of a partial scapholunate ligament injury suffered by the Spanish rider. Microsurgical techniques were used to remove the cyst and repair the ligament as a preventative measure, to thus avoid possible problems during the season.
Rins will be resting up for 7 days before beginning a functional recovery programme and rejoining his team for further preseason testing. His team are already in Southern Spain for the test at the Circuito de Jerez, which begins tomorrow and runs through Thursday. French rider, current CEV Repsol champion and new addition to the Monlau Repsol Technical School project for the 2014 edition of the series, Fabio Quartararo will accompany Alex Marquez over the course of the three-day test.