Jonas Folger will return to action for the Petronas Sprinta Racing Moto2 team for the remainder of the Czech Republic round to replace Khairul Idham Pawi who is suffering with severe hand pain after Friday practice at Brno.

The German rider stepped in for the team at the previous three rounds while Pawi was recovering from a right hand injury sustained at Jerez back in May.

After taking part in the opening two practice sessions in Brno, the Malaysian rider has been forced to pull out of the race weekend due to the pain he was enduring while riding, before a collision with another rider saw his condition worsen.

“In the first session of the day I felt a little bit of pain in my hand but I was still able to ride the bike without many problems, but in the second session I struggled a lot in the braking areas with pain,” Pawi said. “Then to make things worse, I made contact with another bike on the track and that made it even worse.

“I’m really disappointed to not be able to continue, but what today has shown me is that I can only do six laps on the bike before the pain becomes too much. It’s a hard decision to make but the right one for my recovery.”

Folger, who has been in the Brno paddock this weekend without a ride, has duly been called up and hopes to make the most of the opportunity as he passes on his best wishes to Pawi.

“I came to Brno to enjoy watching from the paddock and not intending to ride, but now it’s my turn again,” Folger said. “I’m very sorry for Pawi because he’s going through a hard time trying to recover.

“On the other hand I’m also excited to have an opportunity to put down some laps on the bike with a team I know. It’s a little bit late with only two days on the bike but I’m looking forward to getting started. I’ve got a lot of good memories from Brno and I’m looking forward to riding tomorrow.”

Folger is Yamaha’s European-based MotoGP test rider this year but hasn’t committed to a full-time race seat in 2019. The German rider stepped away from racing due to illness at the end of 2017 before returning to testing action earlier this year.

Pawi ended the Moto2 FP2 session in Brno down in 30th place and over three seconds off the outright pace.

 

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