Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Kawasaki Withdraws from MotoGP

Ending recent speculation, Kawasaki announced on January 9th that it has decided to suspend its factory MotoGP racing activities, an action described by KHI as a "countermeasure" to cope with a "quickly changing business environment". The move will save KHI an estimated $43.8 million in 2009. Kawasaki never won a race in MotoGP, its best result was a 2nd byFrench rider Randy de Puniet in Japan in 2007. Kawasaki's 2009 line-up would have been American rider John Hopkins and the Italian Marco Melandri. Kawasaki will continue racing activities using mass-produced motorcycles as well as supporting general race-oriented customers. Yamaha, which won last year's MotoGP championship with the Italian rider Valentino Rossi, said that it would compete in the 2009 season and had no plans to leave the sport.


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