Dani Pedrosa's career as test rider for KTM has gotten off to an unlucky start. The Spaniard has suffered another broken collarbone, and will require surgery and a long recovery process before he can start testing again.
Pedrosa's injury is a legacy of the many previous times he has broken his collarbone. The right collarbone is severely weakened after being broken twice before, and having surgery to fit plates. That has left him with a so-called sclerotic lesion on the collarbone, which means that bone growth in the collarbone is very slow. That, and a lack of blood flow to the bone, has left him with osteoporosis, and a weakened collarbone.
Just how weakened is clear from the fact that Pedrosa managed to break the bone without any particular physical impact. He had broken it as a result of 'a gesture of strength', he said in a press release, by which he presumably means a sudden and strong movement.
That endemic weakness means Pedrosa faces a long recovery process. He is to undergo treatment with stem cells to help promote bone growth and strengthen the bone, to prevent a recurrence.
The length of the recovery period means that Pedrosa will miss KTM's program set out for the first part of the year, and will only resume work once his collarbone is fully healed. Pedrosa was due to take part in the shake down test at Sepang, to be held ahead of the official MotoGP test there at the start of February. Fortunately for Pedrosa, he has already been able to help KTM, having ridden the bike during a test in December.
The press release from Pedrosa's PR staff announcing his injury appears below:
Pedrosa will undergo surgery with his stem cells for double fracture of the right clavicle
Dani Pedrosa is forced to start 2019 with very different plans to those that he had foreseen with great enthusiasm. The Spanish rider will face in the coming months a broad and demanding process of physical recovery derived from the complex double stress fracture of the right collarbone that has recently been diagnosed. The three-time world champion and MotoGP Legend will follow a meticulous medical planning that includes tissue repair surgery, with graft contribution constituted by its own stem cells, with what is pursued the best and most effective consolidation of the injured bone.
To clarify his circumstances, Pedrosa notes that "unexpectedly I had a double stress fracture in the right collarbone, just in a gesture of strength. Over the years I have had several fractures in that area and the last time was in three parts, leaving it sclerotic. The middle part does not have enough blood flow, creating osteoporosis, so it requires an effective solution to regenerate the bone and achieve adequate recovery. After undergoing several tests and medical consultations, the clear recommendation is the total recovery and bone health. "
Unfortunately this entire clinical process takes time and will prevent Pedrosa from continuing with the test program initially planned for the beginning of the year as a test rider for the KTM team. Despite that, the first tests during the past month of December in the Circuit of Jerez have given Dani Pedrosa a good start point in the development of the KTM and is totally involved in the project. That is why Dani himself regrets "these circumstances and I thank KTM for their great support for my full recovery. We are very excited about the work we are doing and that is why I want to be physically in the best conditions for that exciting task. For me, the challenge do not stop”.