Colin Edwards has stepped down from his MotoGP ride with Forward Racing.
Edwards is retiring at the end of 2014, but it has become increasingly clear he would not even complete the season.
During his home Indianapolis weekend the popular Texan confirmed the remainder of the year was looking 'hit or miss'. Edwards did not explain why his schedule was being dramatically cut, but insisted he would ride at Silverstone and the Valencia finale.
A statement from Forward Racing on Monday announced that the American 'will not be racing in Brno and in the second part of the 2014 season'. However the door was left open to some further appearances, with Edwards 'contributing to the development of the machine and doing some wild-cards.'
“It has been a great weekend here at Indy with lots of support from the family, the friends and the team,” said Edwards. “I'm not 100% certain about how many races I will do till the end of the season but for sure I will be in Silverstone, weather I will be racing or not. I have a big fans support there and I cannot miss this appointment. I am thinking about my future, the different possibilities. I'm happy and I look forward to the second part of my life.”
Edwards arrived in MotoGP as a double World Superbike champion in 2003 and has ridden for the Aprilia, Gresini Honda, Factory Yamaha, Tech 3 Yamaha and Forward Racing teams. The 40-year-old claimed twelve podiums and three pole positions in grand prix, missing his best chance of victory after falling in a final turn showdown with Nicky Hayden at Assen 2006.
Team owner Giovani Cuzari added: “I'd like to thank Colin Edwards for everything he has done for our team. Our adventure in MotoGP has started thanks to him. Two times World Superbike Champion and successful rider in MotoGP, he accepted the challenge of the CRT project with us, scoring the first ever pole position and CRT win in Qatar 2012 in the year debut of this new class.
“From that race we have constantly grown, improving the results. It was thanks to his experience that last year we chose the best package on the grid to race together in the new Open category. His contribution has been crucial and we can now count 8 wins out of 10 races.
“We will see Colin again this year as a wild-card and he will always be part of the Forward Racing family. I'd like to thank once again Colin, amazing rider and great man.”
Edwards had high hopes for this season's Open class Yamaha, but has been left in the shadow of new team-mate Aleix Espargaro. Edwards switched from the Yamaha to FTR frame at Mugello with his focus increasingly turning to development of the frame for next year's Forward package.
It is still unclear why Edwards is not completing the season, but he is to be replaced by Alex de Angelis.
de Angelis raced for Forward in Moto2 last season, but switched to the Tasca Racing outfit for 2014 where he is 14th in the championship standings. de Angelis previously raced full time in MotoGP for Gresini, claiming one podium finish in 2009.
Stefan Bradl is confirmed as joining Forward for 2015 but a second seat is likely to be available, with Espargaro set to join Suzuki.
Edwards has indicated he would be interested in a test rider role for Michelin, which is returning to MotoGP as the official tyre supplier in 2016.