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Page last updated at 17:45 GMT, Wednesday, 17 March 2010

Jorge Lorenzo to ride at final MotoGP pre-season test

Jorge Lorenzo
Lorenzo will be relieved to have raced at two of the three tests

Jorge Lorenzo is to ride at the final MotoGP pre-season test in Qatar on 18-19 March despite having not yet fully recovered from a hand injury.

The Fiat Yamaha rider missed the second winter test after displacing his thumb and fracturing his hand in training.

"The fracture happened less than five weeks ago, but we couldn't miss the last test as it would have been bad for our preparation," said the 22-year-old.

The new MotoGP season gets under way on 11 April in Qatar.

Lorenzo finished runner-up to team-mate Valentino Rossi in last year's world championship, but was desperate to ride at the final test so as not to lose vital pre-season ground on his main rival.

"The doctor has made a special carbon fibre protection and [manufacturers] Dainese have modified my glove, in order to further protect the fracture, so we will see how we get on," he added.<


Lorenzo's team manager Wilco Zeelenberg admitted the situation was problematic but said it was good news that they could be at the final session.

"Of course we have had to miss a whole test but we are confident that we can make up for lost time because the 2010 bike has proved to be very competitive from the first time we have used it," he said.

"We will have to wait to see how Jorge's hand feels when he starts riding, but we do not take anything for granted."

Despite being team-mates, Rossi and Lorenzo have an intense rivalry. Last year the pair had separate teams of mechanics, with a partition dividing their garages, a set-up they have confirmed they will keep in 2010.

Lorenzo spoke seriously about leaving Fiat Yamaha last season, saying he did not always feel appreciated, before eventually signing a new one-year deal, while Rossi has made it clear he does not feel there is room for both riders in the team.

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see also
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Rossi dominates testing in Sepang
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Rossi sets pace in opening test
05 Feb 10 |  MotoGP
Pedrosa to focus on 2010 after op
24 Dec 09 |  MotoGP
Rossi hands ultimatum to Yamaha
08 Nov 09 |  MotoGP
Fresh injury setback for Lorenzo
08 May 08 |  MotoGP
Lorenzo battles back
06 May 08 |  MotoGP
Lorenzo injures ankle in practice
02 May 08 |  MotoGP
Lorenzo undergoes arm operation
15 Apr 08 |  MotoGP

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