Broc Parkes is to step in to replace the still ill Jonas Folger in the Monster Tech 3 Yamaha team at Phillip Island. The Australian veteran is already part of the Yamaha family, riding for the manufacturer-backed YART World Endurance team.
Parkes is an obvious choice, being both Australian and having previous MotoGP experience. Parkes previously rode for the PBM team in 2014, when he was teammates with Michael Laverty aboard Aprilia-based ART machines.
There is still no news on when Folger will make a return to MotoGP, as the team has not yet released any information on a diagnosis of his illness. Folger is suspected of having suffered a relapse of the Epstein Barr virus, and if that is correct, that would put him out for an extended period of time, and possibly meaning he would miss the rest of the season. If that happens, Tech 3 will have to make a decision on who would replace Folger for the last two races of the season, at Sepang and Valencia.
Below is the press release from the Tech 3 team announcing Broc Parkes as a replacement:
Broc Parkes to join Tech3 for Australian Grand Prix
Experienced Australian rider Broc Parkes will fill in for the recovering Jonas Folger in front of his home crowd this weekend at Phillip Island. Folger returned to his native Germany before the Japanese Grand Prix to undertake blood tests for the suspected Epstein Barr virus. Monster Yamaha Tech3 would like to welcome Parkes, who has previously competed in MotoGP in 2014 and who has achieved success in the World Superbike and Supersport leagues. The Australian ace is also a competitive front-runner in the FIM Endurance World Championship for the Yamaha Austria Racing Team having picked up four podiums in fifteen races.
"Of course, I would like to thank the Monster Yamaha Tech3 team for giving me the amazing opportunity to race at my home Grand Prix in front of all of my supporters, fans and family. I am really looking forward to getting on the Yamaha YZR-M1 at Phillip Island and giving it my all!"