'Hard landing' - Marquez back in motocross action

Marc Marquez puts healing shoulder through its paces on the motocross track ahead of Argentina MotoGP.
'Hard landing' - Marquez back in motocross action

Marc Marquez reached another milestone in his shoulder recovery by returning to motocross training following the Qatar season opener.

The reigning five-time MotoGP champion once again narrowly lost out on victory to Andrea Dovizioso in the Losail night race and certainly didn't look hampered by the left shoulder, following December's surgery to prevent further dislocations.

Marquez then gave the shoulder a further workout with a heavy landing on the motocross track (see below).

"The time between the two races has been good, I was able to return training with a motocross bike and I feel confident for this race," said Marquez, ahead of this weekend's second round in Argentina.

“We started well in Qatar and fought until the end for victory. The goal is of course to do the same in Argentina and take as many points as possible."

Argentina 2018: Three penalties in 24 laps

Marquez began last year's Argentina MotoGP as the pre-race favourite, but went on to receive no less than three penalties by the end of 24 chaotic laps.

It all began when Marquez stalled his Repsol Honda at the start of the (delayed) warm-up lap, leaping from his machine before managing to bump start the engine, turn the bike around and return to his grid slot.

That's not allowed and a ride-through penalty was issued, dropping Marquez from 1st to 19th place.

The second penalty came while charging back up the order, when Marquez barged into Aleix Espargaro at the penultimate turn, resulting in a 'drop one place' penalty.

But it was the third infringement that made headlines around the world; Marquez's uneasy truce with Valentino Rossi being shattered when he launched his RCV inside the Italian at the same penultimate turn.

Contact was made and, although both stayed upright, Rossi ran wide onto the wet grass and fell. The Italian remounted to finish 19th, while Marquez was relegated from fifth to 18th after being slapped with a 30-second penalty.

Marquez's immediate attempt to apologise was furiously dismissed outside the Yamaha garage by Uccio, while Rossi later unleashed both barrels to the media, labelling Marquez a 'dirty' rider who has 'destroyed our sport', adding that the Spaniard makes contact deliberately and 'hopes you crash'.

Marquez felt he had done 'nothing crazy', while Espargaro added that he was hit harder by Danilo Petrucci than Marquez.

Meanwhile, fellow Honda rider Cal Crutchlow won the race, although Marquez set the fastest lap by 0.484s and, at times, he had been riding 1.5s faster than the rest of the field.

Marquez also tangled with Rossi in Argentina during the 2015 race, on that occasion it was the Spaniard who was thrown from his RC213V as they crossed paths on the exit of the hairpin.