MotoGP team manager provides update on Marc Marquez’s injury

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SATURDAY UPDATE: Despite being cleared to return from his injury, Marc Marquez won’t be racing Sunday, his Repsol Honda Team says (click to read story)

The manager for the MotoGP team of Marc Marquez said Wednesday he “isn’t counting the days” for the eight-time champion’s return from injury.

Marquez underwent successful surgery Tuesday on a fractured right arm that he suffered in a crash in the season opener Sunday. Repsol Honda Team manager Alberto Puig said it was “very important” that doctors found no damage to the radial nerve while attaching a titanium plate to the right humerus.

That has prompted some reports that Marquez could return as early as the next race this Sunday in Jerez, Spain. Team officials have indicated they hope Marc Marquez can return for the Aug. 9 MotoGP grand prix in the Czech Republic, but Puig said the team is prioritizing Marquez’s long-term health over a timetable for his comeback from the injury.

“At this moment, we are not thinking in the timings,” Puig said in an interview (watch the video above). “We have a long relation and a long period to be together with Marc, and what we want is the safety of the rider first. We want him to be strong and fit to secure the next years coming and he can be ready to race at his maximum level.

“Marc will try to come back as soon as possible but from our point of view, from our mentality, we have a lot of respect for this guy, for all of our riders, but in particular, we want that Marc understands his healing is very important for us and for him. And that’s why we’re not going to be counting the days to see when he’s coming back.”

If he can’t race Sunday, the injury will cause Marc Marquez to miss his first MotoGP premier series race after winning six of the past seven championships since entering the circuit in 2013.

“Frankly speaking, I don’t think the guys in the lead can be really proud or happy of winning a title without having the best rider of the world participating in it,” Puig said. “It’s a championship that will not be the same if Marc is not racing for the championship, and I think everybody knows.”

Sergio Perez still has coronavirus; will miss second consecutive F1 race

F1 Sergio Perez out
Laurent Charniaux/Pool via Getty Images
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SILVERSTONE, England — Sergio Perez will be out for a second F1 race at Silverstone this week after again testing positive for the coronavirus.

The Mexican driver had hoped to return to Formula One after spending seven days in quarantine, but his Racing Point team said this morning he had tested positive.

“He is physically well and recovering,” the team said. “The whole team wishes Sergio and his family well and we look forward to his return.”

That means German veteran Nico Hulkenberg again fills in for Sunday’s 70th Anniversary Grand Prix after having also replaced Sergio Perez when he was out for the F1 British Grand Prix at the same venue last week. Hulkenberg did not start that race because of an engine problem.

There are two consecutive weekends of racing at Silverstone as Formula One tries to pack in races following the pandemic-delayed start to the season.

Perez became the first Formula One driver to test positive for coronavirus, and it had been unclear whether he would be available to drive after the period of quarantine was extended to 10 days.

Racing Point also was in the news Friday after being hit with a 15-point penalty in the Formula One constructors’ championship and fined 400,000 euros ($470,000) Friday for using brake ducts based on those from last year’s Mercedes cars.

The stewards ruled that Mercedes was the “principal designer” of the parts, and that Racing Point made only minor changes to computer design data it received from Mercedes.

Rival team Renault filed protests about the legality of the brake ducts, which were added to the “listed parts” under F1 rules for 2020. That means teams must design their own. Racing Point argued it was merely using information about the Mercedes parts to inform its own design.

Racing Point uses customer engines from Mercedes and has admitted basing its 2020 car design on photographs of last year’s Mercedes car. The similarities led to the Racing Point being nicknamed the “pink Mercedes” when it was first seen in testing ahead of the season.

Racing Point can appeal the ruling. The points deduction drops the team from fifth to sixth in the standings, below Renault. The ruling doesn’t affect the points totals for Racing Point’s drivers.