Pol Espargaro has opened up on the hectic twelve-day period that followed on from the painful FP4 crash at Aragon that broke a radius bone in his left wrist, saying it took “24 hours [of] rehabilitating” each day to be present in Thailand.

The Catalan travelled to Barcelona immediately after the bruising fall to have a plate inserted in the joint. From there he engaged in a variety of physical therapy techniques to speed up the healing process.

“It's been a very long week at home for me, training and getting ready to be here with this injury,” Espargaro said. “That was my main target, to race here in Thailand. But the hours of physiotherapy, cryotherapy, magnetic therapy, laser [treatment], I have done all the machines possible!

“And it was like 24 hours rehabilitating, when I was sleeping I was using the magnetic therapy. So I couldn't do more at home. My target was to be here, and I'm here, I think I can say in a good shape.

“I was waking up at 8:30am, and at 9 I was starting directly with cryotherapy and pressure therapy, that was about one hour. After that I was training, and then I was going to the gym and training in the gym.

“Then I was going to the physio, the physio was treating me. I was eating into the physio, because already it was two, I was going home, resting a little, putting the cryo and pressure therapy again.

“I was training once again in the afternoon, going to the gym. And after that going to the physio. Home, eat, cryotherapy then sleep with the magnetic adapter. And again this was my routine for the full day, so it was 24 hours rehabilitation.

“Even when I was sleeping I had the magnet on the hand. So I couldn't have more time or be in a better way.

“So thanks to the doctors, because Xavier Mir did an amazing job. They have opened the arm, I have 14 stitches, so they have opened it quite a lot, and they have put a plate on.

“The plate is quite big as well, but it was the only way to fix the injury. The fracture was clean, it was not with movement, so it was very clean and nice. But anyway, to be here so fast, I needed to put a plate on it.”

On the crash that caused the injury, Espargaro remained somewhat baffled: “It was very strange. Honestly, I cannot tell you why I fly. We do not understand still now.

“For sure it was a new hard rear from the pit box in the first chicane, but I was not faster than the other laps from the pit box, we compared with Miguel's [Oliveira] lap exiting from the pit box in the same place, and he was faster than me.

“I can just tell you that the position on the bike was not the correct one, because I was just exiting from the pitbox, looking behind and I didn't want to be in the middle, so that's why I was a little bit out.

“You know, it's very trick and very difficult, and for sure I am super angry, because when you crash it's one thing, but when you crash like this it's a shame. So it is what it is, at the end we need to take it, and I have worked so hard to be here to make up the other mistake.”

Espargaro was then asked if Johann Zarco’s dismissal from the team and the lack of options to replace him added pressure to return as soon as possible.

“Yes, but this is part of our sport,” he said. “I need to give the maximum I can, and on the other for sure KTM needs me, as all their riders, to develop their bike. But the only way to develop a proper bike is to push it to the limit, so one thing leads to the other.

“And again, so for sure it's important to race here, that's why I didn't want to rest at home, even if it was maybe better for my injury, but I want to race, I want to continue developing the bike and give a hand to KTM. Because they deserve it, they are putting a lot of effort in this project and they need it.”

 

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