JEREZ DE LA FRONTERA, Spain – Despite a valiant effort by the defending MotoGP champion, Marc Marquez has decided to withdraw from the Andalucia Grand Prix this weekend at Circuito de Jerez-Angel Nieto.
Marquez was declared fit to ride Thursday after breaking his right humerus in a crash in last Sunday’s MotoGP opener. He underwent surgery last week to repair the damage before arriving at Circuito de Jerez-Angel Nieto on Thursday.
After opting not to turn any laps during Friday’s practice, Marquez turned 10 laps in Saturday’s third and final practice ahead of qualifying. However, after completing an installation lap in Q1, Marquez parked his bike and retired from the remainder of the event.
This is the first event Marquez has missed since Valencia in 2011 when he was competing in the Moto2 class. He’ll turn his attention to returning on Aug. 9 for the Czech Grand Prix.
“It has been a difficult week and a lot has happened since last Sunday when certainly I would not have said, ‘I will try to race next week.’ But when you have a passion for something and you devote yourself to achieving something, you have to at least try so your conscience is calm,” Marquez said. “After the operation I saw I had mobility in the elbow and good strength and I was able to do some push-ups, of course there was pain there but it was manageable. I then spoke with Honda about all of the options and we agreed to try on Saturday, to see what was possible at least.
“Throughout I have listened to the doctors and my body, in the morning today I was feeling good and we were happy with our progress. But then when it came time to do the Time Attack, when it is less about being consistent and more about being aggressive, the arm was without strength. I don’t know if it was from the swelling or from the heat but I knew I needed to listen to my body. Throughout this process I have spoken with my Repsol Honda Team and with HRC and I want to say thank you to them for always respecting my decisions. I also want to thank the doctors, physios and those close to me for helping me to try and chase this dream. Sadly, we cannot race tomorrow but I will continue to do everything I can to be back on track in Brno and to fight for the championship.”