Team HRC’s Ruben Fernandez will not be on the gate for the second round of the 2024 MXGP World Championship, as he has not recovered from the leg injury sustained at the first round of the series, however teammates Tim Gajser and rookie Ferruccio Zanchi will be there to make sure that two-thirds of the team will be in action for this Spanish GP, held at the Arroyomolinos circuit near Madrid.

Five-time world champion Gajser will be hoping that he can continue his early-season form that saw him win the qualifying race and the second moto at round one in Patagonia-Argentina, and sees him just three points off the top of the world championship standings. The Slovenian looked excellent across the whole weekend and will now try to turn that speed into an overall victory at a track that he hasn’t always had the best of luck.

Unfortunately, Spanish teammate Fernandez will not be lining up next to him because of the torn ACL injury that he suffered in the first turn incident of the Argentina qualification race. It is a massive shame for him, because not only is this his home GP, it is also a race that he stepped up onto the podium for last year and he was really excited to try and do the same again in 2024. The #70 will now have surgery on Tuesday to fix the problem, with the decision having been made that this was the best course of action, in order to get him back fit and healthy and racing as quickly as possible.

After his sixth overall in South America, 17-year-old youngster Zanchi is raring to go once again, as he looks to try and better his performance at Villa La Angostura. He came through the pack excellently in both races, but now the aim is to try and start a little bit closer to the leaders and see how his pace matches up with those riders who have several year’s more experience than the Italian. While the team are still trying not to put too much pressure on his shoulders, his great start to 2024 is raising the bar and growing expectations and after a couple of weeks of testing, it’ll be a good chance to make an even bigger impact in this exciting MX2 class.

Tim Gajser  243

It was important to get off to a strong start in Argentina and I did just that, winning two of the three races and riding well on what was a tricky track. Now, it is important to maintain that in what will be another difficult challenge in Spain. I’ve had mixed emotions there before, but there should be a lot of fans attending and I always enjoy riding when we have an enthusiastic crowd so it is a race that I’m looking forward to.

Ruben Fernandez  70

Unfortunately, I just haven’t been able to recover in time to race the MXGP of Spain this weekend. It is a big disappointment because obviously it is my home GP and I love racing in front of all the fans here. However, after trying to ride a small amount on Wednesday, and then having a doctor check-up on Thursday, it was decided that surgery to repair the ACL would be the best approach, and one that would see back to pain-free racing in a positive timeline. A big thank you for all the support I’ve received and I hope to see you at the track, even if I won’t be lining up on the gate.

Ferruccio Zanchi  73

I was very happy with how I rode in Argentina so my confidence is high for Spain this weekend. We came away from that first round with a lot of things to work on, but also a lot of things went right which is a good place to be for race one. Now, having had a weekend off, we hope that the changes we’ve made will be an improvement and I can do even better at Arroyomolinos. It should be an exciting weekend an I’m looking forward to it a lot.

Marcus Pereira de Freitas

HRC General Manager – MXGP

Mixed news this week, as we got the verdict that Ruben wouldn’t be able to race at his home GP. He did everything possible to be healthy for riding but in the end, it just wasn’t possible in the condition he is in. It is a big shame, but we still have Tim and Ferruccio who are both very eager to do well in Spain and are coming in with a lot of confidence from their performances in Argentina. It should be a good GP, with a lot of crowd and hopefully some good weather so Team HRC will be ready!

Photo Credit – @shotbybavo

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