After a crashin during a practice session at Brands Hatch re-injured Neil Hodgson’s shoulder, the former WSBK (2003) and BSB (2000) Champion announced his retirement from racing today in a press release. In his crash, Hodgson injured his shoulder, which had been previously injured during a motocross training accident (road racers after cross-train in the dirt) here in the US. After undergoing testing on the shoulder for the past three weeks, it’s become clear that the injury will require Hodgson to retire from racing after a 20 year career.
“To be honest I’m still pretty shell shocked from Brands, when you start the season you know you’re going to have to take a few knocks but the very first time I slide off I land straight on my shoulder! I knew it was bad, I have lived with it all last year and got to understand the level of weakness and recovery. I had more work to do but was really happy with the progress, riding the bike was the best therapy but also the biggest risk,” said a distraught Hodgson.
“I am gutted obviously, I had a plan to come back to the UK and have some fun with Rob and his team, It will take time for me to come to terms with this but it is the right decision. My shoulder will get back to probably 90% over the next couple of years so I will be able to have a normal life.”
“For all my fans and all the supporters who have been with me over the years I want to thank them all, Rob’s team and sponsors for this year I really am sorry I could not fulfil our plans, the Motorpoint guys and all Rob’s team have been great and I hoped to be part of their success this year,” concluded the Champion.
Motorpoint Team Principal Rob Mac commented on the situation saying, “Wwe have been working closely with Neil since Brands Hatch and have known the injury was career threatening, to lose Neil like this has been tough to take, the whole team had been put together with Neil and Dan. As a team we all feel for Neil, he will be around with the team helping our riders and sponsors so he can’t put his feet up just yet.”
Motorpoint has tapped Ian Lowry to replace Hodgson on the Motorpoint Yamaha R1 for the rest of the season.