Michael van der Mark To Replace Jonas Folger At Valencia

Michael van der Mark is to make a second appearance in MotoGP. The Dutchman is to step in once again to replace Jonas Folger in the Monster Tech 3 Yamaha team at Valencia. 

Though the announcement is not yet official, the Dutchman revealed he would be riding at Valencia in a Dutch-language interview for the WorldSBK website, and published by the Dutch website Racesport.nl. Recorded after the final round of WorldSBK at Qatar on Saturday, Van der Mark says, "It's great to be riding in MotoGP again next week in Valencia. It's a shame Jonas [Folger] is still ill, but I'm deeply honored that Hervé [Poncharal] has asked me once again to replace him. It shows that I did my best in Sepang."

"I'm really looking forward to the weekend at Valencia," Van der Mark said. "I know the bike a bit now, and the most important thing is that we have normal weather conditions in Valencia so that I can try and improve every session. I hope I can score a good result and make the team happy." Van der Mark finished 16th in Sepang, just outside the points.

Though there has been on official update on Jonas Folger's condition, the German is believed to be suffering a recurrence of Epstein Barr, a condition he is believed to have suffered with in 2016. Folger is currently in his native Bavaria, undergoing medical tests and recovering. He is unlikely to see MotoGP action again until the Sepang test in January 2018.

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It will be interesting to see if he can already make progress. In relative terms, you would expect him to, because every next session is a big chunk of time in the saddle added. At the same time, they are very little chunks of riding time compared to the motoGP experience of the rest of the field. So you could argue both ways. For him it sure is the coolest possible way of closing off the racing season. Would be great if he can be in some real fights for points again.

For VDM. I'm really looking forward to see him in action again.
Sad for Folger though.... it's worrying that they have not found yet a solution to his health issues.
Since that major crash everything seems to be going wrong for him. I guess he'll miss the Valencia test too....
Not very promising. I can just wish him a speedy recovery