Ten Kate Honda Signs Max Neukirchner

October 14, 2009
Bryan Harley
Bryan Harley
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Our resident road warrior has earned his stripes covering the rally circuit, from riding the Black Hills of Sturgis to cruising Main Street in Daytona Beach. Whether it's chopped, bobbed, or bored, metric to 'Merican, he rides 'em all.

Max Neukirchner - Portimao Test
World Superbike rider Max Neukirchner will be trading in his GSX-R for the CBR1000RR as he returns to his former employer Honda for the 2010 World Superbike season.

The Hannspree Ten Kate Honda team announced that it has signed Max Neukirchner for the 2010 World Superbike season. Neukirchner returns to a Honda team that he has a long history with and will compete onboard the CBR1000RR after racing for the Alstare Suzuki team in World Superbike for the last two seasons.
Neukirchner is a five-year World Superbike veteran who has two career wins to his credit. Those both occurred in 2008 while competing for Suzuki, the same year he finished a career-best fifth place. Neukirchner’s 2009 season started with great promise after two podium finishes, but a broken right femur after a crash at Monza and a broken back suffered in training at Imola during his comeback kept him sidelined for much of the 2009 World Superbike season.

The 26-year-old German rider started his career on Honda and spent nine years racing Big Red machinery, including second place in the German 250cc championship series. He will join Hanspree Ten Kate Honda’s Jonathan Rea next year after Rea earned a spot on the 2010 Honda team with a strong rookie performance that includes two race wins. He is the highest-placed Honda rider at fifth in the 2009 World Superbike standings.
“I have to say that my feeling is really good right now. The Ten Kate team is so big and experienced and the CBR1000RR is clearly such a strong package. Jonathan has proved that with his victories this year and I’m really looking forward to being his teammate as we are good friends. It feels really great to be back on a Honda; I am feeling fit and I’m determined to put a good season together next year,” Neukirchner said.
Medical reports have given Neukirchner a clean bill of health, paving the way for his return to World Superbike in 2010. Look for his debut on the CBR1000RR at the Portimao test on October 27-28 following the end of the 2009 season.

“As much as anyone else, we were caught by surprise when we found out about Max’s availability. We immediately saw a ‘dream team’ line-up with Jonathan Rea, which is probably the youngest pairing ever in a World Superbike championship team, with both riders already having wins under their belts. We understand that Max may need some time to find his full race-craft again but we are quite sure that his talent, motivation and determination will get him quickly back up to speed,” said team manager Ronald ten Kate.

Max Neukirchner – Career History

1997: ADAC Junior Cup – Aprilia 125cc
National 125cc championship (Honda)
1999: 4th German road-racing championship
National 125cc championship (Honda)
2000: 10th German 250cc championship (Honda)
2001: 5th German 250cc championship (Honda)
2002: 2nd German 250cc championship (Honda)
10th European 250cc championship (Honda)
2003: 3rd European 250cc championship (Honda)
2004: 9th World Supersport championship (Honda)
2005: 12th World Superbike championship (Honda)
2006: 18th World Superbike championship (Ducati)
2007: 9th World Superbike championship (Suzuki)
2008: 5th World Superbike championship (Suzuki) – two wins
2009: (prior to final round)16th World Superbike championship (Suzuki)
Only first four rounds contested, due to injury.

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