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Dislocated shoulder to P5: Marquez’ miraculous Q2

A crash left the 2018 Champion with a possible dislocated shoulder, but he headed back out to salvage a stunning fifth place in qualifying

That troublesome left shoulder of Marc Marquez (Repsol Honda Team) became one of the talking points in a dramatic Q2 at the Gran Premio Motul de la Comunitat Valenciana after the seven-time World Champion crashed on his first flying lap.

During his Level7 celebrations at the Japanese GP this year, Marquez dislocated his left shoulder. This, however, was nothing new. Marquez said after the celebrations that it’s something that apparently happens quite regularly while training. But when the number 93 rider stood up clutching the same shoulder after his Turn 4 crash, you’d have been forgiven that his session was over.

Marquez big crash on Q2 lap 1. Looks like a shoulder injury!

“It was unlucky. I knew since Motegi the shoulder wasn’t so good, even last week I had some troubles. I’m not 100%,” began Marquez. “I was just unlucky, I wasn’t pushing, maybe the tyre wasn’t warm enough, I lost the front, then when I arrived in the gravel I felt something strange in the shoulder. Then I got on the track, I tried to move a bit, some people helped me and it went back into place. I cooled down a little bit, then the doctor came, we did a check, everything was fine, so I was ready to ride again.”

For a normal person, riding a MotoGP™ bike – well - just isn’t possible. But to ride one – extremely well – just minutes after dislocating a shoulder? Never. Not for a seven-time Champion though as Marquez proved his super-human abilities once more, heading out on circuit to post the fifth quickest time of the session.

“It was impossible (to forget about the crash and focus) because the pain was there,” explained Marquez, who admitted he wasn’t thinking about pole position: “I did two laps, then on the last lap I went into the box because it was enough. I didn’t want pole position, I wanted to be in the front two rows, and it was even better than I expected with the pain. The main thing is that I was ready to ride, like we saw, because the lap times were fast. Now it’s important to work with the physio to be ready for tomorrow.”

However, Marquez does admit that the injury may not have been a full dislocation like we saw in Japan: “It was different to Japan because I needed help from my mate. Today I went over on the track and tried to move, I felt a small crack but it was in, so it was maybe not quite a dislocation."

Is it possible to celebrate too hard? Apparently so!

“Of course, you can’t ride the bike immediately. We did a check with the doctor, which was important, I said “okay” because I was ready to ride the bike. It was painful because of the injury is there from the last weeks. We’re lucky we’re at the last race with just some tests, then surgery in December.”

The plan for Marquez? Surgery on the injury in December in order to get it fixed for the 2019 season. But until then, there’s plenty of work to do: “Since Motegi, I haven’t stopped. I rode in Phillip Island and Malaysia and the shoulder injury is there.

“It’s something you can only fix with surgery and then last week, training, I felt some strange movement and pain. It was a strange movement. It’s like an injury that’s always there. You need to stop. I’ll stop in December but now I can’t. the good thing is that muscles are good. If don’t have any impact, the shoulder is okay. If I felt unstable, I wouldn’t be here. Everything is done, but riding the bike is ok. It’s painful, but I feel safe.”

Will Marquez end another sensational year with a win on Sunday? Find out when the lights go out for the final time in 2018 at 14:00 local time (GMT +1). 

Gran Premio Motul de la Comunitat Valenciana: MotoGP™ Q2

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