The cancellation of the Japanese Grand Prix was a 'gift from heaven' for injured Moto2 title favourite Toni Elias, who had defied hand and foot fractures to claim pole at Qatar and fourth in the first ever 600cc race.
That was on April 11, and with Motegi moved to October due to the flight chaos caused by the Icelandic volcano, the Gresini Moriwaki rider has had extra time to prepare for the new second round, held on home ground at Jerez.
"The rescheduling of the Japan race was like a gift from heaven for Elias, who was able to spend an extra week recovering from the operations to his hand and foot,” said team manager Fausto Gresini.
“Toni was simply extraordinary in Qatar and showed his ability to do incredible things once again. We have a great relationship with him and fourth place felt like a win. Thinking back to the night before the GP when we weren't sure if he would race at all, the final result just fills me with joy.
“He still won't be fully recovered in time for Jerez but I'm sure he can be amongst the frontrunners at a circuit he loves,” added Gresini.
Elias confirmed he still won't be at 100 percent for this weekend, but is determined to deliver another 'big race'.
"Thinking back to the race in Qatar makes me really happy. My physical condition was right on the limit and I don't think I could have ever expected to put in the performance I did,” he said.
“Pole position on the Saturday helped me to recover confidence and motivation and the perfect support from the team did the rest. It was a massive effort and I am still feeling the effects, so the postponement of the Grand Prix of Japan was a godsend for me because it gave me more time to recover.
“I have slept and ate so much over the last couple of weeks, as well as working intensively with my physiotherapist and doing exercises designed at building my strength. I still won't be 100% for Jerez but not going to Japan was a huge help and I hope I can have another big race on a track I really like."
Elias made his GP debut in the 125cc race at Jerez back in 1999. He won the 250cc race in 2003, which is the only time that he has stood on the podium at the circuit in any class.