Franco Morbidelli unlikely to make start of MotoGP testing after medical evaluation postponed


Franco Morbidelli is likely to face a disrupted start to the 2024 MotoGP World Championship season after his Prima Pramac Ducati team confirmed he is still undergoing assessments after his accident at Portimao just under a week ago.

The Italian – who joins the 2023 MotoGP Teams’ title winners’ from Yamaha this season – crashed heavily while track testing a stock-spec Ducati Panigale V4 R with a host of other MotoGP riders at a WorldSBK test on 30 January [Tuesday].

Though not communicated at the time, with Pramac Ducati instead merely referring to his fall as a ‘big crash’, it has since emerged Morbidelli was knocked unconscious in the accident, prompting new Ducati stablemates Marc Marquez and Alex Marquez – with whom he was sharing the Portuguese track – to stop and assist before medical teams arrived.

Going on to spend a night in hospital, Morbidelli’s participation has been in doubt since he returned home to Italy, with Pramac Ducati providing a further update just two days before the start of the Sepang test that suggests he won’t be joining Jorge Martin to spin his first laps on the Ducati GP24 this year.

“The medical team has decided to postpone the evaluation for a few additional days,” the team wrote on X. 

“This delay is intended to allow for a more comprehensive understanding of his fitness and to determine his eligibility for participation in the upcoming scheduled test days.”

Morbidelli has completed just a single day of testing with Pramac Ducati following the conclusion of the 2023 MotoGP season at Valencia in November.

This will be his seventh season in MotoGP having previously raced with Marc VDS Honda (2018), Petronas SRT Yamaha (2019-2021) and Monster Energy Yamaha Racing (2021-2023)






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