Dani Pedrosa will return to MotoGP for this weekend's Australian Grand Prix, just two weeks after breaking his collarbone at Motegi.
The Honda rider lost his title chance by missing yesterday's Malaysian GP, where Jorge Lorenzo clinched the championship. But having made good progress since surgery on his injury, Pedrosa says he will race at Phillip Island.
"It was hard to make the decision to not go to Malaysia, but after another week I feel it was the right thing to do because during these days my condition has improved quite a lot," he said. "So I'm looking forward to getting to Australia and finding out how I feel on the bike. I will arrive at Phillip Island on Wednesday to have some time to recover from the flight and rest a little bit.
"I know it will be tough, because Phillip Island is a very demanding track and also the weather conditions can play a big part, but I really believe it's time to come back with my team and try to return to the high level of performance we had before the crash in Japan."
Pedrosa suffered the injury when a throttle problem caused his Honda to crash early in Friday practice at Motegi. He immediately flew back to Spain and had surgery the next day, with a titanium plate inserted to fix the fracture.
"After the operation I began rehabilitation immediately," said the Spaniard. "The surgery was very successful and the plate was well fixed, so the main problem was not the collarbone but the stiffness in my neck and all around my shoulders. I've been having massage and doing exercises with my physiotherapist and I will keep this up in Australia."
Although the title is gone, he insisted it was still worth getting back on the grid as soon as possible.
"The championship is decided, but for us it's still not over," Pedrosa said. "The target now is to retain second place in the standings and continue working on the bike so that we arrive in good shape for the winter tests, when we will start working for next year."