Pol Espargaro not ready for Mugello return, aiming to be back before summer

Pol Espargaro will continue his recovery from injury this weekend, instead of making a return to MotoGP, which he still hopes to do before the summer break.

Pol Espargaro in GasGas jacket & cap. - Gold and Goose

Pol Espargaro will not be ready to return to MotoGP action this weekend at the Italian Grand Prix in Mugello, it has been announced.

Espargaro’s plan to return from injury had him back on the bike in Mugello, however the #44 rider has been advised to wait until a later round to make his comeback.

It is still plausible to see Espargaro back on the GasGas-branded KTM RC16 before the summer break, either at the German Grand Prix on 16-18 June, or at the Dutch TT on 23-25 June. Returning before the summer break “continues to be the idea,” Espargaro said in a statement published in a GasGas press release.

Espargaro said: “I was really looking forward to getting back on my bike but, as I said from the beginning, the final decision would be made for me by the doctors and they asked me to wait a few more days. 

“My original plan was to return for one of these next three races before the summer break and this continues to be the idea. The most important thing is to be physically ready, and this call means I have a few more days to keep working at home and arrive in the best form possible and as soon as possible. 

“I’m feeling really good and I’m really motivated. I hope to see the team and everyone in the sport, and for sure the fans, as soon as I can.”

Espargaro’s injuries, including a broken jaw and a pulmonary contusion among others, were sustained at the 2023 season-opening Portuguese Grand Prix when he crashed in Practice 2. 

Since the third round of the 2023 MotoGP season in Austin, Texas, Espargaro’s seat in the GasGas Tech3 team has been filled by Jonas Folger, who has scored points in two races so far thanks to a 12th place finish in the Grand Prix of the Americas and a 13th in the French Grand Prix.

The 2023 MotoGP World Championship continues this weekend with the Italian Grand Prix from Mugello. UK viewers can benefit from free-to-air broadcasting of the races on ITV (Moto2 and Moto3 races will be broadcast on ITV4, MotoGP on ITV).

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