Rizla Suzuki has confirmed that John Hopkins
will race for the team in the Czech Republic round of the MotoGP World Championship, at Brno on Sunday 14th August.
Hopkins will be making his second MotoGP appearance of the season for Suzuki, having ridden to tenth as a stand-in for the injured Alvaro Bautista at Jerez earlier this year.
But at Brno, Hopkins will ride alongside the Spaniard, as Suzuki returns to a two-rider format for the first time since scaling down its MotoGP activities at the end of last year.
The Anglo-American last rode at Brno for Rizla Suzuki in 2007 when he recorded his best-ever MotoGP finish of second place - a result that contributed to Hopkins securing fourth in the championship.
“It's a real thrill to get the opportunity to ride at Brno and I'm really looking forward to it," said Hopkins. "I'm very pleased that we have been able to achieve it because it is something we have been working on for a long time.
"To be honest it couldn't be at a better track for me either, I had my best result in my MotoGP career at that track and I'm really pumped that I am going there again. As far as the Suzuki goes, I think it's a great bike and the package is a lot better than when I last rode it in 2007.
"I think that in comparison to what I was able to do in Jerez, I believe I will be able to perform a lot better because back then I hadn't been on a bike in a competitive environment for six or seven months.
"I got thrown in at the deep-end in Spain, but this time I will have a lot more race-craft. It's also a huge benefit for me to be riding alongside Álvaro instead of riding in-place of him, so that will be really good, not just for me but for the whole team.
"With the two of us we can help develop the bike and share the extra data to get the best out of the GSV-R. It will be better to be riding with him in the team instead of replacing him, because nobody likes to see a rider injured and having more bikes on the grid is always better for everyone.