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Makato Tamada will not participate in Chinese GP

Makato Tamada will not participate in Chinese GP

Makato Tamada will not participate in Chinese GP

The Konica Minolta Honda team have announced that Makato Tamada will not participate in this Sunday´s Chinese GP due to a fracture of the scaphoid in his right hand.

Tamada sustained the fracture when he crashed in the qualifying practice for the Portugese GP in Estoril. He had to sit out the Portugal race but it was expected that he would be fit to participate this weekend in China.

An initial medical exam had indicated that Tamada was merely experiencing some cartilage and ligament inflamation, but further tests, carried out when the rider cointinued experiencing pain, revealed the fracture. The Japanese rider will have surgery today at the Showa University Northern Yokohama Hospital in Japan. He faces the posibilty of being out of action for about three weeks.

With Tamada having to sit out this Sunday´s big race, the Konica Minolta Honda team have had to enlist the help of Dutch rider Jurgen van den Goorbergh; while Tamada can only hope for as short a recovery period as possible.

"I have tried until the last moment, but when you have such a pain there is nothing you can do about it. Today I will have surgery on my right hand with the hope that recovery time will be as short as possible. I will do all I can to be at the team disposal for the next Grand Prix in Le Mans. I wish good luck to Jurgen and to my Team for this weekend."

Although having enlisted the help of Jurgen van den Goorbergh to stand in for Tamada, the Konica Minolta Honda Team Manager has expressed deep regret that Tamada will not race.

"A true pity for us and most of all for Makoto who wanted to redeem this exciting start to the season. After the last medical check up, doctors have banned him from riding and today he will have surgery on his right hand. He really wanted to be present at the Chinese circuit, but now he will have to fully concentrate on rehabilitation because for us he is a rider who didn't demonstrated his true value until now. But this sort of things can happen in world of racing.

"The Team, thanks to the trust of Honda and Konica Minolta, didn't renounce to be present at the Chinese Grand Prix and the choice to aim our hopes to the experience of Jurgen van den Goorbergh it's not random. I believe that Jurgen has the competence and the necessary motivations to make every effort to do well. From our side, we'll do our best to make him adapt in the quickest way possible to the power of the RC211V.

"Surely, in such a hard category as the MotoGP, it's not going to be easy. But the circuit is new to everybody and if we work hard in the four sessions prior to the race, we can have a dignified race in the third round of the MotoGP 2005."

Stand-in rider Jurgen van den Goorbergh – who raced in the top class of the Bikes World Championship from 1997 to 2002 and, in the 500cc class, has ridden with Honda NSR 500cc – was excited about the opportunity to participate and compete in the upcoming races.

"I can't believe it. I have so much enthusiasm and thanks to the Konica Minolta Honda Team I'm back to compete in the best category of bike racing against the best riders. For me this is a completely new challenge. I have ridden in the 500 class and in the Supersport for many years, therefore I consider myself more than capable of achieving good results with the Honda RC211V. "Everybody will step on this track for the first time and I consider this one point less of a disadvantage for me. Naturally I will not have much time, but I will try to adapt to the bike in the four hours which will come before the race and then we'll see what happens."


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