Michael van der Mark to replace Jonas Folger for Sepang MotoGP race

World Superbike regular Michael van der Mark will replace the ill Jonas Folger and make his MotoGP debut with the Tech3 satellite Yamaha team at Sepang, it has been announced

Michael van der Mark to replace Jonas Folger for Sepang MotoGP race

Earlier this year, Van der Mark had looked set to race for the factory Yamaha squad at Aragon in place of Valentino Rossi.

But when the Italian returned it forced Van der Mark onto the sidelines with the promise of a future MotoGP test.

When Folger was struck down by suspected mononucleosis, ruling the German rider out of the three most recent flyaway races, a new opportunity for Van der Mark arose.

While Kohta Nozane and Broc Parkes replaced Folger for the Motegi and Phillip Island events respectively, the 24-year-old Van der Mark filling in for him at Sepang.

Van der Mark, who was unavailable for the Australian round as he raced in Jerez this weekend, said: "It goes without saying that I am really excited.

"I came quite close to getting the opportunity to ride a MotoGP bike a few weeks ago [at Aragon], but it didn't work out.

"Then Herve [Poncharal, Tech3 boss] called, and although I will have a busy schedule, I could not say no to this chance.

"I am very happy and I look forward to this adventure.

"Luckily, I know Sepang, but the MotoGP riders have done a lot of tests there this year, so everyone will be fast.

"However, I just want to enjoy this weekend, to improve myself and see how it is to ride the YZR-M1.

"At the moment we have some good momentum in World Superbikes so I think it is the perfect time to jump on the Yamaha.

"I look forward to riding the bike and I want to thank Hervé and Yamaha for this opportunity."

Van der Mark is sixth in the WSBK standings with three races to go in his first season with Yamaha.

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