Suzuki Crew Chief, Stuart Shenton (above), will be leaving the squad as it cuts back to a one-rider team for 2011, with Alvaro Bautista (below) heading the team’s MotoGP efforts.
The Suzuki MotoGP Team will participate in 2011 with a single rider, Alvaro Bautista. Alvaro joined the team in 2010 and made good progress with GSV-R, the Suzuki Grand Prix machine, improving his results throughout the season. Suzuki will continue to make the best use of the short time to the start of the 2011 MotoGP season to develop the GSV-R machine for this, the pinnacle class of motorcycle racing, and we thank all Suzuki customers and race fans for their continued support.
Suzuki’s longest serving Grand Prix team-member, Crew Chief Stuart Shenton, has left the squad after an amazing 19-year career with the Japanese marque. Shenton and Suzuki parted company following the final race of the season at Valencia, after Suzuki confirmed its plans to field just one rider in next season’s MotoGP World Championship. The massively experienced Englishman began work in the motorcycle Grand Prix paddock in 1976 with Kawasaki, before moving to Honda in 1983. Shenton joined Suzuki in 1992 and has been chief engineer for many great Suzuki riders including, Kevin Schwantz, Sete Gibernau, John Hopkins, Loris Capirossi and numerous others in his illustrious career.
Due to Suzuki’s decision to operate a one-man team next season, several other members of the crew will join Shenton in leaving the squad. George Dziedzic, Richard Francis, Jeffrey Oh, Tsutomu Matsugano, Renato Pennacchio and Erkki Siukola will all be greatly missed following the re-structure for 2011. Suzuki Motor Corporation would like to thank all of the departing crew-members for their years of service and wish all their ex-team-mates well in their new careers.
Shinichi Sahara – Team Suzuki MotoGP Project Leader:
“I want to wish Stuart all the best and thank him from the bottom of my heart for everything he has done for Suzuki. He has always been so hard-working and striving for the best result. He is one of the most methodical men I have worked with in motorcycle racing and the team will greatly miss his experience and drive to get things done. I also want to pass on my best wishes on behalf of Suzuki to the other guys that have left the team. It is very unfortunate – and sad – to say goodbye, but I hope they will always remain friends and that we have the chance to work together again in the near future.”