Reigning MotoGP world champion Marc Marquez has successfully undergone an operation to repair a fractured little finger he sustained a few days ago in a dirt track training crash.

According to Honda, Marquez suffered a displaced fracture of the proximal phalange in the little finger of his left hand after falling off of his bike during a dirt track training run. The 22-year old was immediately taken to the Dexeus Institute in Barcelona where Dr. Xavier Mir, renowned for performing surgeries on MotoGP and WSBK riders, inserted a titanium plate in Marquez’s hand to put the fractured bone back together.

The injury to the champion is another setback in what has already become a challenging year for Repsol Honda. If Marquez can’t go at Jerez, the team would effectively be out of its two regular riders, although there’s a good chance that Dani Pedrosa could return after recovering through his own surgery. To be fair, Honda hasn’t ruled out the possibility of Marquez being back on the saddle, but past history of the injury makes it unlikely that he can fully recover in time for this weekend’s race. The kind of injury Marquez suffered has been described as “potentially the most disabling fracture in the hand” with a recovery time of two to three weeks.

Then again, don’t be surprised if Marquez still suits up and races this weekend.

Fortunately for him and the team, the injury is to his little finger so it’s not as debilitating as, say, the thumb or the index finger. He could probably still race if he really feels the need to do so, especially since he’s already 30 points behind championship leader Valentino Rossi. Missing a race and seeing that lead widen is the last thing he and the team wants to see happen.

So if I was a betting man, I wouldn’t be surprised if we see Marquez race at Jerez this weekend. The team’s current circumstances in MotoGP makes missing a race out of the equation at this point.

Continue reading to read more about Marc Marquez’s untimely injury.

Why it matters

The hits just keep on coming for Repsol Honda these days, doesn’t it?

If it’s bad enough that it’s had to deal with Dani Pedrosa being sidelined for the past two races, the team has also had to live through the struggles of his replacement Hiroshi Aoyama, and the bad luck Marquez has had in two of the first three races of the season. Now, the champ is also hurt after a freak accident that probably could’ve been avoided and his status for this weekend’s race is still up in the air.

Oh, I haven’t even mentioned the incredible early-season form of both Yamaha and Ducati, Honda’s biggest threats to the MotoGP title. The combination of all those things has put Repsol Honda in full scramble mode this early in the year. I could make a case that it’s still early enough in the year and the team can still turn things around. After all, Repsol Honda is a three-time, defending constructor’s champion so if there’s a team that can overcome all of these challenges, this is the one you wager on. That’s the glass-half-full approach.

The glass-half-empty approach is to look at everything that has happened in the first three rounds of the 2015 MotoGP season and conclude that this has the makings of an ill-fated season for Repsol Honda. Every team goes through years like this where Murphy’s Law hangs over the team’s fortunes where every positive break they catch results in two or three things going wrong.

It would be a shame if this is how Repsol Honda’s season turns out. I hope it doesn’t because I want to see this three-team race to the title go down to the wire. But something doesn’t feel right about the champs this year and I’m legitimately concerned that Marquez’s unexpected injury won’t be the last issue the team has to deal with this season.

Source: Honda Pro Racing

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