Doctors have finally given the go ahead for eight-time world champion Marc Marquez to make a MotoGP return, for the first time since last July, following his latest medical check.

A Repsol Honda statement made no mention of next weekend's Portimao round, but on social media Marquez made clear he will be on track for round three of the season:

"They have been 9 difficult months, with moments of uncertainties and ups and downs, and now, finally, I will be able to enjoy my passion again! See you next week in Portimao!!"

After testing an RC213V-S production bike twice last month, Marquez was targeting a comeback at the Qatar season openers. However, doctors concluded his troublesome right-arm fracture was still not ready.

But the green light has now been given and, providing he passes a MotoGP medical check on Thursday, Marquez can complete his first ever MotoGP laps at Portimao (one of the tracks he visited on the RC213V-S) in Friday practice.

The Repsol Honda statement said: "In the review carried out on Marc Márquez by the Hospital Ruber Internacional medical team, four months after surgery, led by Doctors Samuel Antuña and Ignacio Roger de Oña, and made up of Doctors De Miguel, Ibarzabal and García Villanueva, for an infected pseudoarthrosis of the right humerus, a very satisfactory clinical condition was found, with evident progress in the bone consolidation process.

"In the current situation, it is considered that the patient can return to competition, assuming the reasonable risk implicit in his sporting activity."

By missing Qatar, Marquez could have found himself already 50-points down on the title leader if, like last year at Jerez, the same rider had won both opening races.

Instead, the surprise championship leader is Pramac Ducati's Johann Zarco on 40-points, while Yamaha's Qatar race winners Maverick Vinales and Fabio Quartararo were each off the podium in the other race and so only managed 36 points.

It was even worse for Suzuki's reigning world champion Joan Mir, who heads to Europe with just 22 points out of a possible 50.

Combine those low scores with what looks like being another evenly matched season and Marquez is far from out of title contention with a planned 17 rounds still to go.

But the big question will be how long it takes him to get back to his previous form after so long off a MotoGP bike.

It also remains to be seen what Marquez thinks of the latest Honda developments. The factory has been winless since Marquez's injury, with younger brother Alex taking their only podiums (two) of last season.

The top Honda in Qatar was Marc Marquez's new team-mate Pol Espargaro, who finished in eighth and 13th places.

After Portimao, the next race will be the Spanish Grand Prix in early May, which was the scene of Marquez's initial injury.

After surgery, he attempted an early return the following weekend but withdrew after qualifying and then needed a second operation when the plate broke due to stress accumulation a few days later.

A third operation was then carried out in December, at a different hospital, when the bone failed to heal due to infection.

 

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