Pedrosa Confirmed Absent From Assen

As predicted yesterday, Honda have finally confirmed that Dani Pedrosa is to miss the Assen MotoGP round. HRC today issued a terse press release announcing that Pedrosa would not be racing in Assen, and that Hiroshi Aoyama is to take his place in the Repsol Honda team, while Honda test rider Kousuke Akiyoshi will move in to Aoyama's seat at the San Carlo Gresini Honda team. Pedrosa is now expected to make his return at Mugello, as he stated in Repsol's press release.

Pedrosa's injury is still shrouded in mystery. After breaking his collarbone in a crash with Marco Simoncelli at Le Mans, Pedrosa had his collarbone plated and was expected to return at his home Grand Prix in Barcelona. However, he did not make an appearance there, amid rumors that the Spaniard had aggravated his injury in a training accident. After having yet another operation to fix a loose bone chip, Pedrosa was unable to race at Silverstone, and has now also decided to skip Assen. Once he makes his return at Mugello, he is likely to face a barrage of questioning from the media, and especially from the Spanish contingent. Pedrosa is in for a very long weekend at Mugello.

Below is the text of the Honda press release.

HRC confirm Pedrosa to be replaced by Aoyama in Assen

Honda Racing Corporation have confirmed that Spanish rider, Dani Pedrosa will not race this weekend in Assen. He will be replaced in the Repsol Honda team by Hiroshi Aoyama from San Carlo Honda Gresini Team.

HRC test rider, Kousuke Akiyoshi will step in to replace Aoyama and ride alongside Marco Simoncelli in the San Carlo Honda Gresini Team.

HRC are pleased to give this opportunity to Aoyama to race on the Factory RC212V and thanks Gresini Racing Team for their cooperation.

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What a shame - this will make it pretty hard for him to compete for the championship this year. I was looking forward to him and Casey having some decent battles 'cause Casey's runaways are boring as hell.

Hope he recovers sooner rather than later.