It seems that the Kawasaki drama is finally about to come to a close. Marco Melandri has announced that he has decided to sign with the new Hayate Racing Team (the official name of the 1 bike Kawasaki MotoGP bid). Not wanting to be left out, John Hopkins has also made a statement about his situation and plans for the 2009 season.
Melandri before heading to Qatar, Marco Melandri told the media that would think about signing with Hayate only when he finished testing the 2009 ZX-RR, and could assess its potential and only if the team could give him certain guarantees regarding development as Kawasaki is only committing to engines maintenance.
“Marco will race on. He has decided today that he will go on. He tested the bike in Qatar and he said the new bike was not so bad. If they can solve a problem with rear grip then he believes he can be reasonably competitive. He decided to race because he felt staying out of the championship for just one year was too hard. Even though the bike might not be at the highest level, for him it was best to carry on and at least try rather just sit at home. There is no alternative, so he has to try. He is aware of the situation. He knows he has to suffer a little bit. It will be a tough, tough season, but you never know. There was some encouragement in Qatar so maybe he can surprise in some races. He said the bike is better than 2008” said Alberto Vergani, Melandri’s manager.
Posting on his official site, John Hopkins finally broke his silence and offered some insight into what has been occurring in his camp. It seems big things are afoot, but Hopper isn’t ready to disclose them just yet.
I just wanted to put a quick post to tell you something you all already know…. I read my website every single day as you guys keep me going, and I enjoy hearing how everyone is doing.
I have been under STRICT instruction from my management not to comment on anything or talk of any plans from here. I notice that someone got a little emotional for me not updating and keeping everybody informed, but I will give you my word right here and now “I promise you all, as payback for your support, as soon as i get the go ahead on what i can do and say this page will have the first press release from myself!”.
It seems that anything i say can be twisted or minipulated in the media, so i am choosing to not say much to avoid any confliction or drama. I appreciate all of you that support me, you are true die hards and thats awesome.
All i will say is, you are all in for big treat!!!!!
as always, THANKYOU ALL SO MUCH FOR ALL YOUR SUPPORT!!!
Since Kawasaki’s pullout, Hopkins fate has been speculated on by all and sundry and his name has been linked to Stiggy Honda to replace a first ailing Roberto Rolfo and after the first WSBK race at Phillip Island to replace the same Rolfo who got beat by his new team mate and rookie Leon Haslam. Hopper has also been linked to Paul Bird’s official Kawasaki team.
According to Marco Melandri, Hopkins did not want to ride for the new Hayate/Kawasaki team and that Hopkins has given up and his opinion the money question is more important for the Anglo-American rider, while now they would have to race for nothing.