Valentino Rossi says his shoulder problem is the worst injury he has sustained during his career, and the Italian claims he is riding at 70 percent of his potential.
Rossi has been carrying the injury since he crashed during a motocross training session in April. The Italian says he still needs a lot of time to recover and admitted he will have to undergo surgery when the season ends if things don't improve.
"These things heal in three and a half months: I'm fully assisted, but only one and a half months have gone by," Rossi was quoted as saying by Gazzetta dello Sport. "The shoulder bone tried to dislocate and broke the cartilage around it. I'm disheartened: this is the worst injury in my career.
"It will stay with me until the summer break and, in the meantime, I will try to strengthen the muscles in order to support the shoulder. However, if I don't manage to, I will have to undergo surgery at the end of the season, and that will waste some months for me.
"I feel at 65-70 percent of my physical potential, but to race here, with these incredible spectators, will perhaps give me an extra push to do better than I could. We'll try to make the bike easier to ride in order to suffer less, and the rest will come from the heart."