Marc Márquez will not return to the paddock until mid-April at the earliest. The Repsol Honda team confirmed early on Monday the absence of #93 in the next round of the championship which will take place in just seven days at the Circuito de Termas de Río Honda, Argentina, proves that Marc will be lost after undergoing surgery this morning.
His crash in Portimao, on the third lap of the Portuguese Grand Prix, reported to the Catalan a displaced fracture in the big toe of his right hand; The 30-year-old pilot underwent surgery in Madrid, at the Ruber Internacional Hospital, where the surgeons fixed the fracture with two screws.
Now, #93 will have ahead three weeks before thinking about traveling to Austinsite of the third round of the Motorcycle World Championship and one of Márquez’s favorite races due to his long record of victories on the North American track, a total of seven wins, six of them obtained consecutively between 2013 and 2018.
The absence of Márquez in Termas de Río Hondo has raised doubts about what will happen with the sanction of two Long Lap Penalties that the FIM Commissioners Panel applied to the Catalan for his reckless maneuver in Portimao, where he ruined the aspirations of Jorge Martín and Miguel Oliveira.
According to the official document signed by the commissioners that make up the FIM Panel (Andrés Somolinos, Tamara Matko and its president Freddie Spencer), the sanction that Marc Márquez has received must be complied with, and we quote verbatim, “in the MotoGP race of the Michelin Grand Prix of the Argentine Republic”, referring to articles 3.2.1 and 220.127.116.11 of the FIM sporting regulations.
The very wording of the document clears up any doubt about when and where the sanction should be applied, so that Marc Márquez will not have to comply with the double long penalty lap at the Grand Prix of the Americas, Where is your return scheduled?
Extract from the notification received by Marc Márquez
The formula used by the FIM stewards in the official document that Marc received is similar to that of other sanctions; For example, if we read the notification of the sanction that Joan Mir had to comply with last Sunday -a Long Lap Penalty for his contact with Fabio Quartararo in the Sprint Race on Saturday-, the text clearly says that the # 36 must do effective the penalty “in the MotoGP race of the Tissot Portuguese Grand Prix”, and so did the Balearic. And the same is true of other notifications such as the one received by Takaaki Nakagami in Valencia, Franco Morbidelli in Malaysia or Miguel Oliveira in Australia, all always referring to a specific race.
The only recent case of a driver receiving a penalty without setting a particular grand prix was that of Celestine Vietti; the Italian ignored a black and orange flag during the Moto2 race of the Valencia GP, the last round of the 2022 season, and the FIM stewards decided to penalize him with a double Long Lap Penalty to be served “at the next event of the FIM Grand Prix World Championship”, which turned out to be the first race this year in Portimao, where Vietti enforced the penalty.
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In the case of Vietti, the Panel of Commissioners had to use this wording formula since the definitive 2023 calendar of the Motorcycle World Championship was not published at that time, and without an exact and concrete list of dates, they chose to set the sanction for the next appointment.