Moto2 Team Report
After taking an extraordinary fourth place in Qatar just ten days after operations to his hand and foot, Toni Elias can be forgiven for breathing a sigh of relief at the postponement of the Grand Prix of Japan.
The extra few days alongside his physiotherapist have been crucial to the recovery of his injuries and even though the Spaniard will still be far from 100% fit for his home race he remains as determined as ever to cement his reputation as the rider to beat in Moto2.
The Manresa man showed every facet of both his talent and his incredible determination on board his Moriwaki MD600 in Doha, where he crossed the line exhausted but exhilarated in fourth place.
Toni Elias says: "Thinking back to the race in Qatar makes me really happy. My physical condition was right on the limit and I don´t think I could have ever expected to put in the performance I did. Pole position on the Saturday helped me to recover confidence and motivation and the perfect support from the team did the rest. It was a massive effort and I am still feeling the effects, so the postponement of the Grand Prix of Japan was a godsend for me because it gave me more time to recover."
"I have slept and ate so much over the last couple of weeks, as well as working intensively with my physiotherapist and doing exercises designed at building my strength. I still won´t be 100% for Jerez but not going to Japan was a huge help and I hope I can have another big race on a track I really like."
Fausto Gresini says: "The rescheduling of the Japan race was like a gift from heaven for Elias, who was able to spend an extra week recovering from the operations to his hand and foot. Toni was simply extraordinary in Qatar and showed his ability to do incredible things once again. We have a great relationship with him and fourth place felt like a win. Thinking back to the night before the GP when we weren´t sure if he would race at all, the final result just fills me with joy."
"He believes in this project as much as we do – we really wanted it to happen and it wasn´t easy to bring it all together. Now thanks to Toni we have even more motivation and I think Moriwaki are aware of that and share it. He still won´t be fully recovered in time for Jerez but I´m sure he can be amongst the frontrunners at a circuit he loves."
"After Qatar Ivanov needs to take another step forward and we will help him with that. We have done some work on the bike to reduce the drag caused by his extra height and we´re sure he can progress in a short space of time. We will stay close to him to help him grow and settle into this new world, and hopefully he can be in the points sooner rather than later."