Valentino Rossi had surgery Sunday on the right shoulder he injured in an April motocross accident, with the hope being that he's fit for the early February first MotoGP test of the new season in Sepang, Malaysia, according to a message in Italian on his personal website www.valentinorossi.com.Rossi suffered a double tear to the tendon and cartilage in the shoulder in a motocross accident on April 15, four days after winning the season-opening Qatar Grand Prix.Though the injury was immediately disclosed, it wasn't thought to be serious. But as the season wore on, and the shoulder didn't progress, Rossi was forced to admit that it was having a dramatic effect on his racing. At the Oct. 10 Japanese Grand Prix in Motegi Rossi said that injuring a shoulder joint, with all its moving parts and nerve endings, is more damaging that a broken bone.With a broken bone, Rossi said, "You say, ‘F---, I'm f---ing stupid,' all the things, but is one month. I lose one season completely."And I'm sure that also my injury from the leg is coming from the problem of the shoulder. Because if I am at 100% maybe I did not make that mistake in Mugello," where his championship hopes ended when he broke his leg in a practice accident. "So I stop with motocross and I need to be more careful for the future."The surgery was originally to take place today or Tuesday, Rossi said at last Sunday's season-ending Valencia Grand Prix, but was moved forward because he was "tired of feeling pain, even while sleeping," the website statement said.The two-hour surgery was performed at the Hospital Cervesi di Cattolica, near his home in Tavullia, with Dr. Alessandro Castagna of the Humanitas Institute of Milan, and Dr. Giuseppe Porcellini of the shoulder and elbow surgery unit of the Rimini public health system.The two surgeons, assisted by Dr. Fabrizio Campi and Dr. Paolo Paladini, spent two hours repairing the tendons, as well as the cartilage of the glenoid ligament. The procedure was performed arthroscopically, and under total anesthesia for part of the procedure, and partially for the rest."The condition of his shoulder, Doctor Castagna and Doctor Porcellini explained, "was absolutely critical: Valentino was really tough to be racing with an injury like this. The surgery went perfectly, without any complications. The rehab period is expected to be 90 days," which means Feb. 14, between the Feb. 1-3 and Feb. 21-23 Malaysia tests, "but we will do whatever we can to meet the needs of the rider."The statement added that "Vale is doing well, and now he must rest for the next few hours before he can begin rehabilitation. In the upcoming days Vale will inform you directly of his condition.”

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Henny Ray Abrams | Contributing Editor

Abrams is the longest-serving contributor at Cycle News. Over the course of his 35-some years of writing and shooting photos, he’s covered events from MotoGP to the Motocross World Championship - and everything in between.

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