The 2013 MotoGP season has been a bad one for shoulder injuries. Shoulder problems have caused Ben Spies to miss almost the entire MotoGP season, and now Karel Abraham has also decided to sit out the remainder of 2013. The Czech rider injured his shoulder in a bad fall at Indianapolis, causing ligament damage which needs surgery to correct. Abraham is currently undergoing therapy to prepare for surgery, scheduled to take place in early October.
Abraham's situation once again underlines how problematic shoulder injuries are. The shoulder is the most complicated joint in the human body, because of the range of motion the shoulder has. To give the shoulder such freedom of movement, it contains a large amount of soft tissue and connecting ligaments. This tissue is easily damaged in a crash, and such tissue takes a very long time to heal properly, and complicated surgery to correct.
The Cardion AB team will now look for a replacement, but finding one will not be easy. They have been told by Dorna and the FIM that a replacement rider should have prior experience, either in MotoGP or World Superbikes, on the grounds of safety. That severely limits the list of eligible candidates, especially as Paul Bird's PBM squad must also find a similar rider to replace Yonny Hernandez, who is moving into the Pramac team to replace Ben Spies.
Below is the official press release issued by the Cardion AB team:
Abraham Does Not Complete MotoGP Season Because of Injury, Scheduled for Shoulder Surgery in Early October
In early October Karel Abraham will probably undergo a surgical correction of ligaments in the left shoulder injured by his fall in Indianapolis in mid August. The therapy means premature end of this season for the Czech MotoGP pilot. The Cardion AB Motoracing team now negotiates a potential substitute for the remaining five races of the season.
Immediately after return from Grand Prix San Marino, not finished because of shoulder pain, Karel Abraham started intense recovery which will probably be accomplished with a surgical intervention in the first week of October. "The current recovery procedures aim at maximum possible improvement of the shoulder function. If it were not for the positive find of the electromagnetic resonance examination we could continue with conservative therapy. When sufficient shoulder stability cannot even be achieved by targeted recovery surgery is the inevitable next step,“ explained Igor Čižmář, head physician of the Department of Traumatology of the University Hospital in Olomouc and specialist in hand, arm and shoulder injuries, who will perform the surgery on Karel Abraham. "After the intervention the operated shoulder must be fixed for less than a month after which period intense recovery may begin. Athletes with targeted stressing of the ligaments are recommended to resume full load after three months at the earliest,“ he noted. Thus Karel Abraham might resume full training load towards the end of this year, i.e. about a month before commencement of the first pre-season tests of MotoGP.
The Cardion AB Motoracing team, in cooperation with the Dorna championship promoter and the International Association of Racing Teams, is now looking for a substitute pilot who would finish the last five races of the season riding Karel Abraham´s motorcycle. "Our aim is to find a good pilot able to race already in Aragon next week. We preferably considered Czech pilots but neither the promoter nor the association recommended them for safety reasons. The priorities include a pilot experienced in MotoGP or at least WSBK racing,“ said Karel Abraham Senior, manager of the Cardion AB Motoracing team.