Moto3 Champion Izan Guevara and 2022 Moto2 challenger Ai Ogura will both miss the opening races of 2023.
Guevara was on track at Portimao’s Algarve International Circuit last weekend for three days of official Moto2 testing with his GasGas Asap squad ahead of his expected debut this weekend. However, the intermediate class rookie struggled more than expected to get up to pace, with mid-week medical investigations confirming chronic compartment syndrome and a triangular ligament injury in his right wrist. Surgery and a month-long recovery will force the young Spaniard to miss out on both the Portuguese and Argentine Grand Prix while countryman Jordi Torres steps into the breech after a decade away from he class and the Aspar team.
“I hope Izan can make a speedy recovery,” Torres said on the announcement. “It’s a pity that after the great season he had last year he starts this season like this, but the most important thing is that he can come back stronger than before.
“In my case, I am happy for the opportunity that the Inde GasGas Aspar Team gives me, to return to a category that I left in 2014 with this team. Everything is different to what I left ten years ago, I take it as a learning experience and as more practice for the MotoE World Championship. I want to keep learning from my rivals, who will be at a different level, because a rider never stops learning.
“It’s a big challenge for me, it will be strange to be back at the intermediate category, but it will help me to keep working on my goal for MotoE. I won’t have an adaptation period, because my rivals have been testing at Portimao for three days, but I will give my best.”
Idemitsu Honda Team Asia’s Ogura will also be out of action for the inaugural race, following an off-track training accident in pre-season. Having missed last weekend’s testing action due to surgery on his left wrist, Ogura is now targeting Argentina for his opening race of 2023.
“Unfortunately, I can’t race in Portugal,” Ogura confirmed on Thursday. “Some weeks ago, I crashed training, and I got an injury on my left wrist that needs a recovery longer than I expected.
“I prefer not to take risks and don’t do this race, to try to be ready as soon as possible, probably for Argentina. That is our plan now. Let’s see when I can start again.”