Marc Marquez will skip this weekend’s Spanish Grand Prix as he continues to recover from a fractured hand, with Honda World Superbike rider Iker Lecuona to deputise.
Marquez has been absent from MotoGP competition since last month’s Portuguese GP, where he sustained a fractured metacarpal in his right hand after colliding with Miguel Oliveira’s RNF Aprilia in the early stages of Sunday’s full-length encounter at the Algarve International Circuit.
The six-time premier class world champion and his Honda squad have now announced that his return will have to wait until at least the French GP in just over two weeks after undergoing checks on Tuesday at the Ruber Internacional Hospital in Madrid, the Japanese manufacturer selecting ex-MotoGP racer and current WSBK rider Lecuona as his replacement at Jerez.
Marquez says he is “sorry” to have to skip his third event in a row as he continues his recovery, insisting that it would have been “risky” to try and compete in his home encounter due to his hand not having healed fully yet, though added that the injury is “progressing favourably.”
“Yesterday we did another CT scan and it has been confirmed that, despite the fact that the injury is progressing favourably, the bone has not yet finished healing and racing in Jerez was risky,” began Marquez.
“Together with the medical team, we decided not to take any risks, to wait two more weeks and return in Le Mans.
“I am very sorry to miss the Spanish Grand Prix because it is always special, because of the atmosphere, racing at home and above all, seeing and enjoying the fans.
“I will continue with the rehabilitation and work to be back as soon as possible. Thank you for your messages of support!”
Lecuona will make his premier class return for the first time since the end of 2021 after losing his ride with the Tech 3 KTM outfit, the Andorran being cast out of the Austrian marque’s fold despite scoring a total of three top ten results in his sophomore season – a best of sixth coming in the Austrian GP.
He then moved to the WSBK series with Honda’s factory operation, Lecuona enjoying a strong debut campaign in the championship as he picked up a debut rostrum finish in the Dutch round at Assen before ending the year ninth in the rider’s standings ahead of team-mate Xavi Vierge.
He currently resides 13th overall in this years WSBK standings having notched up a total of four top ten finishes across the nine races held so far, though he suffered a horror event at Assen last weekend after failing to pick up a point across all three races.