Dani Pedrosa has undergone successful surgery on the broken collarbone that he suffered in Japanese Grand Prix practice on Friday, but the Honda team says it is far too early to say when he might be fit to race again.
Jorge Lorenzo's only title rival sustained the injury when a throttle problem caused him to crash his Honda just a few minutes into opening practice at Motegi yesterday. He flew back to Barcelona for surgery at the Dexeus University Institute Hospital under the leadership of Dr. Xavier Mir today.
"The operation went very well," said Dr. Mir. "Dani had a four fragment chip fracture of the left collarbone and, together with Doctors Marlet and Ginebreda, we have performed a fixation with a titanium plate, made especially for the collarbone. We have fixed the two intermediate fragments with two compression screws."
Pedrosa also caught his left leg under the bike during the incident, but Dr Mir confirmed that there was no serious injury to his ankle.
"Regarding the left ankle, while in surgery, we performed another stress x-ray and saw that we were dealing with a grade one ankle sprain, which will heal in a short space of time," said the surgeon. "The rider is recently out of surgery and I think we must wait at least 48 hours, after which time, if all goes well, we may begin rehabilitation. At this time, it is not possible to give precise dates for recovery."
Lorenzo currently leads Pedrosa by 56 points in the standings with five races to go including tomorrow's Japanese GP, and the injury has come at the worst possible time for Pedrosa with the Malaysian and Australian GPs following on consecutive weekends. If Lorenzo finishes first or second at Motegi tomorrow, then he will automatically become world champion at Sepang if Pedrosa is not able to start next week's race.