Folger to miss Motegi round through illness
12 October 2017 – Tech 3's Jonas Folger will miss this weekend's Japanese Grand Prix due to illness, and is thought unlikely to return for the following event in Australia.
Folger graduated to MotoGP with Tech 3 this season and holds 10th in the standings, having captured his maiden podium in Germany, but will not participate at Motegi due to a mystery illness.
He believes the Epstein Barr virus could have flared up once more, having suffered from the illness in the past, and will return to his native Germany for an assessment.
"I came to Japan and was motivated for these three flyaway races, but I've been feeling really weak since the Misano and Aragón rounds," said Folger.
"On arrival here, I have been struggling with my energy levels, even leaving the hotel room was impossible for me, and unfortunately, I had to miss some Yamaha events, which I'm very sorry for.
"I met with [team boss] Hervé [Poncharal] on Wednesday night and we agreed to go for a check with the doctors this morning.
"I met with Dr Charte and the Clinica Mobile team and they have advised me to return to Germany right away for a series of blood tests.
"I've had Epstein Barr virus in the past and it's a possibility that this has flared up again and resurfaced, but we can't be sure until I've had these tests in Munich."
Poncharal added that Folger is "99 per cent certain" to also be absent from the following week's Australian Grand Prix, but lent his backing to the rookie's ability.
"If there is anything good about this situation, it is that we now know why he has been so weak since the summer break," said Poncharal.
"The more he trained, the worse he felt, and the peak of the problem was on Tuesday and Wednesday where he had to stay in bed because he couldn't even walk.
"The entire Tech 3 team wishes him a swift recovery and we all need Jonas back with us but at the moment there is not much that we can say or do.
"He will not start this race and it's 99 per cent certain that he will not participate in the Australian round.
"More news will come, but for now, we just want to express our sadness and wish him a speedy recovery.
"We all know that he is a top rider when he is on top form."