Ryan Villopoto Spinal Injury Update
As four-time Supercross Champion Ryan Villopoto continues to deal with severe back pain, the Monster Energy Kawasaki KX450F pilot has been ruled out of the Grand Prix of Great Britain – round seven of the 2015 FIM Motocross World Championship.
But he will likely be sidelined for additional rounds – if not the entire season. Villopoto, who broke his tailbone during a crash at round four in Italy last month, was adviserd to return home to America for treatment until he is fully fit.
Further examination of the 26-year-old Villopoto – who also had missed rounds five and six of the FIM MX Championship – confirmed the seriousness of his coccyx injury, with the addition of an L4 compression in his lower spine. X-rays further indicated that the injured bone material is healing – but not at the speed either the Villopoto or his advisers wanted.
Villopoto discussed things with his trainer, Aldon Baker, and decided to make the difficult decision of returning to the USA to concentrate strictly on fitness. His hopes are to return to MXGP in the shortest-possible time frame.
Steve Guttridge, Racing Manager for Kawasaki Motors Europe, observed that only a fully fit RV2 would be able to seriously compete and make his presence known in the premier league of World motocross: “Ryan’s taken the decision to sit out of the British MXGP this weekend. Having suffered more back pain these past weeks he’s not been able to train fully or even ride his KX450-SR practice bike while back in the States. We are now collectively searching for the best structure to help his swift recovery in order that he can come back to MXGP’s when he is fully recovered, bike fit and race-ready again”.
Speaking on behalf of major team sponsor, Monster Energy, Mitch Covington, Vice President of Sports Marketing, says. “We want a 100-percent fit Ryan Villopoto. Ryan is doing what he has to do to recover properly and we support him 100 percent in this decision. He will be back and ready to finish strong instead of just going through the motions hurt.”
During his MXGP debut, Villopoto earned his first win at race one of round two in Thailand. He followed that with a third-place finish in race two. He then finished fourth in both Argentina races, and took another fourth in race one in Trentino before crashing out in race two.