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Livio Suppo named Repsol Honda team principal
24 January 2013
During the official presentation of Repsol Honda's 2013 MotoGP campaign, HRC vice president Shuhei Nakamoto announced that Livio Suppo is to become team principal.
Suppo joined Ducati in 1999 and played a pivotal role in the factory's MotoGP team from its debut in 2003 to 2009, rising to the role of MotoGP project director. Suppo then joined HRC as Communications and Marketing director in 2010, a position he has held ever since.
The Italian is widely credited with securing Casey Stoner's move from Ducati to Honda for the 2011 season, when the Australian won his second world title.
According to Repsol Honda's updated organisation chart, Suppo will now be below only Nakamoto in the hierarchy. He will continue as Communications and Marketing director alongside his new role.
"I'd like to thank HRC for their trust in me," said Suppo. "I will do my best to merit my new role and hope to assist in the Team's success.
"I know that we can count on two very strong riders, a formidable machine, a great international crew and the great support of Repsol and all our sponsors.
"Together we will all do our best to keep the Repsol Honda Team at the top of MotoGP"
Under Nakamoto and then Suppo will be Takeo Yokoyama (team technical director) and Hideki Iwano (team director). Former technical director Shinichi Kokubu will be the new HRC general manager of the Technology Development Division.
With new signing Marc Marquez bringing some of his own staff from Moto2, including crew chief Santi Hernandez, Stoner's former crew chief Christian Gabarrini - who moved with the #27 to Honda - has been promoted to become one of the few non-Japanese with the title 'HRC Engineer'.
Marquez will ride alongside fellow Spaniard and 2012 MotoGP title runner-up Dani Pedrosa for at least the next two seasons.