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John Hopkins to World Superbike on Honda

Friday, March 20, 2009
Kawasaki Racing s John Hopkins finished fifth  his highest placing in Portugal. - Estoril
John Hopkins is trading in his Kawasaki green for a Stiggy Racing Honda and is switching from MotoGP to World Superbike.
John Hopkins, the American MotoGP star who has been without a race team since Kawasaki surprisingly pulled the plug on its 2009 MotoGP team, has been in road racing limbo since Kawasaki pulannounced its decision. Until now.
Hopkins is set to race his Stiggy Honda CBR1000RR in the third stop of the World Superbike Championship in Valencia, Spain, on April 3rd-5th.

Hopper was set to race in his second year of a two year contract with Kawasaki when the factory announced on January 9th they would no longer be participating in the MotoGP Championship Series. Since this decision, the American rider has respectfully settled with Kawasaki. Hopkins finished on the podium four times in the 2007 MotoGP Championship en route to finishing fourth in the title chase on a factory Suzuki. He then moved to Kawasaki, but ended the 2008 championship in 16th place after suffering a myriad of injuries. He is now focused on the remaining 2009 season and excited to race in Valencia with his new team.

“Kawasaki and I worked it out where both parties left the relationship happy, and I am thankful to Kawasaki for letting me ride their bikes and race in their program. I’m excited about racing in the 2009 season and solely putting my focus on moving forward,” said Hopkins.

John Hopkins will continue to be sponsored by Monster Energy Drink, Alpinestars, Arai Helmets and Spy Optic.

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Rubber Side Down -glad he found a ride  March 22, 2009 08:40 AM
I agree w/ toast and that hopper shouldve stayed w/ suzuki. 4 years of development w/ that bike and he was finally making podium finishes. Stiggy honda seems like a good team..they've already made a podium this year and we're only on round 3. w/ hopper racing wsbk - making him the 2nd american rider, the 6th or so ex-motogp rider; 7 manufacturers (thats insane), makes this the most exciting wsbk season ever.
Moto Freak -I hope he does better here!  March 21, 2009 09:37 AM
I hope Hopkins rides better in WSBK. Having a second American rider is great. But....How he kept a ride in MotoGP for soooo many years kinda surprised me because he was never competetive. He must have a great agent. My bet is he'll be middle to the end of the pack in superbike as well. I'll be routing for him anyway.
Charles Toast -Go Hopper!  March 20, 2009 09:36 PM
Although Hopper should have stayed at Suzuki - and then would have still been competing in MotoGP, I'm really glad to see him get a ride in WSB and I'm pretty sure he'll be up there at the front. Instead of beating himself up about his bad luck, it's great to see him being positive about everything, and the fact that he takes sponsors with him to WSB speaks volumes about the kind of bloke he is. Go Hopper!