New to motogp.com?Register here

Tickets purchase
VideoPass purchase

Hopkins to leave Suzuki for Kawasaki at end of season

Hopkins to leave Suzuki for Kawasaki at end of season

In something of a surprise development, Rizla Suzuki's John Hopkins is to leave the team at the end of the current season in a move confirmed yesterday.

In something of a surprise development, Rizla Suzuki's John Hopkins is to leave the team at the end of the current season in a move confirmed yesterday. Whilst few details have been volunteered about the Anglo-American's decision, all indications suggest that he has made the decision to join Kawasaki Racing for the 2008 season.

With both Hopkins' and current team-mate Chris Vermeulen's contracts running out at the end of the year, both riders have been listening to offers from other outfits. Hopkins' decision comes as something of a shock owing to the fact that the GSV-R800 for which he has spearheaded development is the most competitive bike he has ridden in his five season tenure with Suzuki.

The timing of the move is also surprising. Just halfway through the season, the only riders with confirmed rides for 2008 are Valentino Rossi, Nicky Hayden and Casey Stoner, nothing abnormal in the fast changing world of MotoGP. However, last year most switches were announced in the closing stages of the season.

Hopkins is currently experiencing his most successful season in MotoGP, having taken his maiden podium at Shanghai and a number of top five places. Rizla Suzuki will make no official announcement about their rider's decision, leaving said task to the team which chooses to pick Hopkins up for 2008.

Kawasaki are tight-lipped on the situation, but it is believed that they will make a statement tomorrow at Sachsenring ahead of the Alice Motorrad Grand Prix Deutschland.

Tags:
MotoGP, 2007, ALICE MOTORRAD GRAND PRIX DEUTSCHLAND, John Hopkins, Kawasaki Racing Team

Other updates you may be interested in ›