(Reuters) - Ducati rider Andrea Dovizioso is expected to be fit for the start of the 2020 MotoGP season next month after successful surgery for a damaged left collarbone, his team said on Monday.
The 34-year-old sustained the injury on Sunday in a crash while competing in a motocross race at Faenza in northern Italy.
Dovizioso had the operation in Modena and Ducati said he would be able to start physiotherapy immediately and be ready for the first race of the season in Spain on July 19.
“The surgery went well and I want to thank all the medical team that did the operation so quickly,” Italian Dovizioso said in a statement.
“I don’t feel much pain, and that makes me very optimistic. I came home this morning and during the afternoon I will plan my rehabilitation.
“I’m confident that in these weeks I will be able to recover and that I will be in full shape in time for the first 2020 GP in Jerez.”
Ducati Corse sports director Paolo Ciabatti said they were aware of the risks involved with Dovizioso competing in motocross before allowing him to participate.
“He had explained to us that he needed to rediscover those stimuli and sensations that only a real competition can give,” Ciabatti said.
“In the end, we must be relieved that the injury did not have serious consequences and that Andrea will be able to be regularly at the start of the 2020 championship in Jerez.”
MotoGP will resume the 2020 season stalled by the COVID-19 pandemic with back-to-back races in Jerez on July 19 and 26.
Five circuits will host double-headers and Spain will have seven races as part of the revised 13-round European calendar.
Dovizioso finished runner-up behind Spaniard Marc Marquez of Honda in the 2019 season.
Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar and Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Ken Ferris