John Hopkins will be back on the grid in 2014, competing in British Superbike with Tyco Suzuki. Hopkins took a break from motorcycle racing during the 2013 season to recuperate from an injury-plagued World Superbike campaign in 2012 and it was uncertain when, where or if he would make a comeback. Hopper’s last time out in BSB, in 2011, saw the American miss winning the title by a fraction of a second in the final round. It was also his best premier-class showing in any top-tier race series since he entered MotoGP in 2002. The full press release, courtesy of Suzuki-Racing, is included below.– MotoUSA Byron Wilson
Former Suzuki MotoGP, WSB and BSB rider John Hopkins will spearhead Tyco Suzuki’s 2014 British Superbike Championship team aboard the TAS Racing GSX-R1000.
The 2011 BSB runner-up, who narrowly lost the title at the final race of the season at Brands Hatch by 6/1000ths-of-a-second, has agreed terms with the Northern Ireland-based team; after spending 12 months-off racing to recover from operations to repair old injuries.
Said the 30-year-old: “I’m really excited to be coming back to British Superbike in 2014 and delighted to be joining Tyco Suzuki. It’s been a long year away from racing getting my body healthy. I’m feeling good and I’ve also become a brand-new dad. I feel better than I have done in a lot of years and I’m really excited to be getting back out on track; especially on the Suzuki GSX-R1000.”
Looking at the challenge ahead, Hopkins added: “I really feel like I’ve got a point to prove in the British Superbike Championship, so as I say; I can’t wait to get out there on track and do some riding.”
Team Manager Philip Neill said: “Hopper really was the man we wanted for 2014 and we are excited to announce this agreement. John has been a part of the Suzuki family for many years and having him back on a GSX-R1000 next year provides a shot of motivation to everyone at Suzuki GB, our title sponsor Tyco Security Products; and indeed all our crew members at TAS Racing.
“BSB is such a high-profile championship and produces some of the best racing in the world, and I sincerely hope the return of John Hopkins is positive news for all the BSB fans. From a Tyco Suzuki point of view, we simply can’t wait to start the new season.”
Another announcement is expected in the near future regarding any further Tyco Suzuki riders.