Sete Gibernau will return to motorcycle racing action at the MotoGP in Catalunya next weekend, even though he will be at less than 100% fitness.
Podium finisher at the Montmeló track for three consecutive years between 2003 and 2005, Gibernau's participation in the sixth round of the 2009 MotoGP World Championship looked to be in doubt after he fractured his collarbone at the Grand Prix de France last month. The injury forced him out of the most recent race at Mugello in Italy, but the veteran Spaniard was determined to throw his name into the hat for this year's edition of his home race.
Sete Gibernau Speaks...
"I'm looking forward to getting back on the bike again," "I can't promise that I'll be at full fitness, but I'm very motivated to get out there for the first practice."
"Unless I'm mistaken, I think that I was the first rider ever to win any kind of race at the track, way back many years ago. I've also had some great battles here, whether I got on the podium or not. Fighting with Crivillé, Barros, Rossi... there's some great memories that I have of the circuit."
Gibernau's last appearance at the Circuit de Catalunya came in 2006, when an opening lap collision between himself and then-teammate Loris Capirossi caused a multiple-rider crash on the first corner of the track. The injury contributed to his first retirement from competitive racing, but a chance discussion with Ducati bosses at last year's event led to his making a comeback after two seasons away from the scene.