John Hopkins has been confirmed to stay on board the Lloyds British Moto Rapido Ducati for the seventh round of the MCE British Superbike championship at Thruxton next weekend, after the team announced Jakub Smrz would not be able to return to full fitness in time.
The American rider, who had never raced on a Ducati in his entire career, got heads turning at Brands Hatch as replacement for Smrz after he grabbed the team's best result of the season in the shape of a sixth place in race one.
Hopkins' original one-round agreement has been extended for Thruxton with Smrz still recovering from a nasty crash during qualifying at Snetterton in which he broke his thumb. He initially had been given a recovery timeframe of six weeks but it has been pushed back to give the Czech rider more time.
Lloyds British Moto Rapido Ducati team owner Steve Moore confirmed the rider situation and says the plan for the rest of the season is yet to be finalised.
“After speaking with Jakub and his medical team the risk for him riding with such an injury is too high to take,” Moore told Britishsuperbike.com
“Whilst his hand feels strong now, any further damage would cause huge complications for him. So for our local round at Thruxton John will continue on the Ducati.”