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Moto2: Gadea steps in for injured Luthi
7 March 2013
Spanish veteran Sergio Gadea has been called-up by the Interwetten Moto2 team, to ride in place of the injured Thomas Luthi in the remaining pre-season tests and opening races.
Luthi suffered numerous fractures to his arm and shoulder in a testing accident on February 14.
Following his first operation only hours after the accident, in which the fractured bones in his right elbow were plated an screwed back together, three torn ligaments in the AC joint of his right shoulder were re-attached in a smaller operation last Monday.
On Wednesday evening, Luthi was released from the hospital. “I am glad that the operations, the anaesthetics, the pain killers and the hospital atmosphere are now a thing of the past and that I'm now able to look ahead into the future and fully concentrate on my recovery”, he said.
Luthi immediately resumed physiotherapy on his right arm and aims to return for the opening European round, at Jerez from May 3-5.
In the meantime, former triple 125cc winner Gadea will step-in to ride the team's Suter at the last official test, at Jerez from March 18-21, then opening races at Qatar and Austin, Texas.
28-year-old Gadea took a Moto2 podium in 2010, switched back to 125cc for 2011 – claiming two rostrums alongside star rookie Maverick Vinales at the Paris Hilton backed Blusens Aprilia team - but a surprise late-season move back to Moto2 later saw him sidelined through injury.
Gadea was then left without a grand prix ride in 2012.
“To be able to return to the world championship with such a professional team and such a competitive bike is a fantastic opportunity for me,” he said. Whilst I tried to keep in good shape throughout last year riding all kinds of different bikes, I was waiting for a chance like that.
“Times are tough in Spain, which made it very difficult to find financial support for this sport. I am even more delighted about this opportunity and I will pull all stops to deliver the best-possible results. The Suter MMX2 is the world championship-winning machine and speaks for itself, as do the victories and podium finishes that Tom and his team conquered with this bike.
“But miracles don't exist in this sport and even though I have more than a year of experience in the Moto2 category, I can't expect to be able to compete on the same high level straight after my comeback.
“But I am still confident, because I had good results at Jerez and Qatar in the past. During the Jerez tests, I will try to learn and understand as much as possible about the bike, then we will see where we are at in comparison to our rivals. I can't wait to get on the bike!“
Team owner Daniel M. Epp added: “With three victories and a total of 18 podium finishes, Sergio proved that he is one of the top riders in grand prix racing. He deserves another chance.
“With Sergio in our team, Tom can go through his recovery program step by step and without time pressure. But of course, we and his bike are ready for him as soon as he is fit again!”
Gadea's deal means that Gino Rea, whose planned ride with the proposed ESGP entry recently fell through, is still looking for a 2013 ride.
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