PHOTOGRAPHY BY GOLD & GOOSE
With just 11 points separating the top three in the MotoGP World Championship, the battle resumes this weekend at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca with the news that Yamaha’s Jorge Lorenzo is en route to California where he will attempt to race with his damaged left shoulder.
"Finally we have decided to go to Laguna Seca,” Lorenzo said in a Yamaha team release. “Following the final medical check and after speaking with Doctor Rodríguez we are going to try. At the beginning I seriously thought that it might have been convenient to take the necessary time to recover and be back at Indy, but in the last two days I have felt much better so now I want to be there, although I will try to not take too many risks. I want to be there also for the fans, for the championship, but especially for my team that is waiting for me. I want to thank everybody for all the support I have received so far and I want to say ‘thank you’ to the doctors who took care of me after the crash at Sachsenring, both at the Clinica Mobile and at the Hospital General de Catalunya, especially Doctors Rodríguez and Cots."
Lorenzo crashed three weeks ago in Assen and suffered a broken collarbone. The collarbone was surgically repaired in Spain and he flew back to Assen to race, finishing a heroic fifth. Last weekend, Lorenzo crashed on Friday and re-injured the shoulder, flew back to Spain for more surgery but was not able to race in Germany.
Joining him for the Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix will be Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa, the Spaniard having also missed the Sachsenring round due to injury. Pedrosa crashed on Saturday in Germany, suffering a collarbone injury and concussion.
"After a disappointing weekend in Germany, I'm happy to be feeling better again and thankful that my shoulder wasn't completely broken - even if a fracture is still not the best thing to happen,” Pedrosa said. “Now I need to get back on track to see what condition I'm in and hope we can have a good weekend"
With those two riders out of the race, Pedrosa’s Repsol Honda teammate Marc Marquez rode to victory and stole the lead in the championship as well. He leads Pedrosa by two points and Lorenzo by 11.
Pedrosa won the Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix at Laguna Seca in 2009, Lorenzo won there in 2010 and Marquez has never raced at the venue.