Rabat returns for season finale at Valencia
Gosselies, Belgium – 3 November 2015: Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS will be back to full strength at Valencia this weekend, with Tito Rabat returning from injury to ride alongside Álex Márquez in the final race of the season.
Rabat missed the three overseas races after sustaining a fractured radius in his left arm in a training crash at Almeria. The former Moto2 World Champion attempted to race in Japan and Australia, but a free practice crash at Phillip Island exacerbated the injury and the 26-year-old Spaniard was forced to return to Europe for further treatment.
Since arriving back in Europe Rabat has followed an intensive rehabilitation program aimed at improving both the mobility and the strength in his injured left wrist. The 26-year-old Spaniard is quietly confident that the injury will not be a limiting factor this weekend at Valencia, as he looks to mark his final Moto2 appearance before stepping up to MotoGP with a strong result.
After three difficult overseas races in which he scored just seven points and slipped from 11th to 14th in the championship standings, Márquez is keen to end his rookie Moto2 season on a high note this weekend in Valencia, where he finished on the podium and was crowned as the Moto3 World Champion just 12 months ago.
Although not reflected in the results, the Team Estrella Galicia 0,0 Marc VDS rider continued to make significant steps forward with his Kalex Moto2 machine during the overseas races and he heads into the final race of the season keen to capitalise on this progress in front of his home crowd.
“Since returning from Australia my only focus has been on recovery, with three hours of physiotherapy on my injured left arm every day in addition to my normal training. The arm is now much stronger than it was in Japan and Australia and the articulation in my wrist is also a lot better, so I’m confident that I am ready to return to racing. I head to Valencia with no expectations; we will set goals for the weekend only once I’ve ridden the bike on Friday, after which I will have a much better idea of what is possible. This will be my last race in the Moto2 class, so I’d like to bow out with a good result on Sunday, before preparing myself for the MotoGP test on Tuesday and Wednesday.”
“We made so many steps forward in Malaysia but then in the race the conditions had changed, I had a lot of problems and then I crashed out after making a mistake. So the result wasn’t what we were expecting, but now we understand why there were problems, so we go into this weekend with some confidence. My motivation is high for the final race of the season at Valencia, a circuit where I have a lot of good memories. I hope that, with the support of the Spanish crowd behind me, I’ll be able to end the season on a high note this weekend.”
Michael Bartholemy: Team Principal
“It’s been a tough season in general, but the three overseas races were particularly difficult ones for us. Tito was unable to ride in any of the triple-header races because of his injury, whereas Álex struggled to find his form and picked up points only in Australia. But that’s racing and the sign of a strong team is the ability to bounce back from setbacks such as these, which is exactly what I expect us to do this weekend in Valencia. Tito’s condition is much improved since Australia. He has a lot more mobility and strength in his injured wrist now, but we need to see him on the bike on Friday before we start setting goals for the weekend. A good result on which to end the season would go a long way to restoring Álex’s confidence after three difficult overseas races. He has the pace to be in the top five this weekend, or even the top three, but he needs to avoid the mistakes that cost him points in both Japan and Malaysia.”