Still injured from his shoulder-damaging crash of last year’s Malaysian Grand Prix, Spies believed he was well on the road to recovery upon his arrival in Texas for last weekend’s race. He then experienced severe pain – which it has now been revealed is directly connected to his shoulder problem – during the pre-race Warm-Up session.
A statement from his team quoted: “After taking part regularly in the Texan race, in which he finished in 13th position, the American rider was seen by his medical staff, who advised him three consecutive weeks of intense rehab in order to alleviate the strain in his pectorals and back muscles.
“Despite the constant improvement in the condition of his shoulder after recent surgery, Ben still needs further intense work to build up his muscle, and to acquire the necessary strength which will enable him to endure the stress during the race. Therefore the therapy will be different to what he has done so far, focused on limb mobility, thanks to his better physical condition. These three weeks of therapy will allow the Texan to be back for the Le Mans race."
The American had said to motogp.com on Sunday after the race: “This morning we had a little bit of a problem with a nerve in my chest, for some reason. I don’t know whether it was over-compensating with my shoulder, but my shoulder has got a lot better from Qatar which is really, really good.
“Two laps from the end of the Warm-Up I had a twinge in my chest and it felt like there was a knife in it. I don’t know what happened. We went to the Clinica Mobile; they worked with me a lot and got me ready for the race…we need to work harder and get back to 100% because we’re definitely not there, physically, right now."
Ducati test rider Michele Pirro is replacing him in the satellite Pramac squad.