Seven-time MotoGP world champion Marc Marquez expects his recovery from shoulder surgery will take “all the winter” as the Spaniard faces a race against time to be fully fit for the Sepang shakedown in early February.
The Spaniard underwent successful surgery this week on the recurring shoulder injury he further damaged in the final GP of the season in Valencia.
He did compete in the post-season Jerez tests last week before having the operation and predicted his recovery will take him right up until February, when the first round of testing occurs in Sepang on the 1st of the month.
Buenos días a todos! Ya me encuentro mejor💪🏼 Gracias por los mensajes de ánimo! Good morning! I feel better 💪🏼 Thanks for your support messages! pic.twitter.com/nLJ1Qbq8Ek
Former Formula One chief Bernie Ecclestone has revealed he tried to buy Silverstone, only to be told it is not for sale.
The future of the British Grand Prix is currently in doubt after Silverstone decided to invoke the break clause in the contract they agreed while Ecclestone was still in charge as costs of hosting the race continue to soar.
As a result, the 88-year-old offered to purchase the circuit to ensure the race will definitely live on past 2019 but saw his advances rebuffed.
“It would be nice to have one,” Ecclestone when asked about the British race. “They could do a deal there, but I think they’ll have to come up with some sort of an idea of sharing the losses. Or profits, or whatever.
“They must be comfortable, Silverstone. I asked them the other day if they wanted to sell, because I would have bought it, and they didn’t want to sell. They were not interested.
“We could have had the race, obviously. Anyway, they don’t want to sell, so they’re comfortable. They’re not desperate, but they’ve got to have an F1 race.”
New F1 owners Liberty Media have been keen to have more street races through major cities, with London’s being strongly considered after the success of a live event there in 2017.
However, Ecclestone was sceptical of the likelihood of success, revealed he went down that road nearly a decade ago only to find out it was not financially possible.
“We looked at it. We looked at the whole thing, about eight or 10 years ago. It’s too complicated, with too many restrictions. I mean I had the whole thing laid out for the centre of London, past Buckingham Palace, everything was done.
“During the meetings I tried to explain to the City of Westminster and the mayor at the time that we’ve got to find the money to do this. And in the end let’s see how much money you’re prepared to put in.
“Between the two people that made a difference it was £3m. I said, ‘That will probably cover the cost of the mineral water for the hundreds of meetings we’ll have to have. So I think we’ll forget that.'”
But Verstappen insisted he never intended to knock Renault with his comments and they were made more out of frustration at not making progress throughout the year.
“It was never my intention to put them down, but I want to make it better. We now have a deal with Honda, but if we had continued with Renault next year, I would want us to make progress,” Verstappen told Ziggo Sport.
“I am just very clear in what I say. I can also say that they can take it easy, but I am not like that. It can and must be better, and I just always want full commitment.
“However, you have to be open to criticism – that is how I grew up. I’m sorry if you can’t deal with that, but I’m not here to join in with the Olympic idea.
“I want to win, and for that, all parties have to be committed.”
Honda will provide engines to only Red Bull and their junior team Toro Rosso, making them effectively a factory team for the Milton Keynes-based outfit, but Verstappen does not believe this will guarantee a title challenge yet, with there still lots of ground to make up on Ferrari and Mercedes.
“I do not expect that we can really fight for the championship at the start of the season,” Verstappen added.
“But if we are just a little bit better than this year, we can be closer to the competition and run a consistent season, that is already an improvement for the championship.
“You do not necessarily need to have the best car.”
Supercars has extended its SuperNight format for 2019 to include racing on both Friday and Saturday nights in Perth.
With Sydney Motorsport Park not on the calendar for 2019, the location of the inaugural SuperNight after an absence of 21 years of racing under the lights in Australia, Perth will host an extended schedule at Barbagallo Raceway, on May 2-4.
Sydney only hosted a single 300km race, but Perth will feature a 120km race on the Friday night and then a 200km race on the Saturday. Opening practice will be held under the lights as well, with a 30-minute session on the Thursday evening.
Friday and Saturday will then both feature practice and qualifying sessions.
Sunset in Perth in early May is approximately 5.40pm, with racing expected to start at around 6pm local time (8pm on the East Coast), although this is yet to be confirmed.