Thursday, September 20, 2007

Team Kenny Roberts may leave MotoGP, go to World Superbikes in 2008

Despite his very best efforts, Team KR just hasn't been able to perform in MotoGP this year. When it does manage to finish (which isn't very often...), Kenny's bike usually finishes dead last...

(Left) 500cc world champ in the year 2000, Kenny Roberts Jr. is not prepared to ride his father's bike anymore, saying it's not competitive at all. Younger brother Kurtis was drafted in as the replacement rider, but hasn't been able to do much either (Middle and right) Kenny Roberts was the man in his own racing days, winning 500cc world championships in 1978, 79 and 80!

Given his team’s complete failure in MotoGP this year and the fact that Honda will probably not supply him with engines in 2008, Kenny Roberts is reported to be considering a move to World Superbikes in 2008.

Kenny Roberts, who won the 500cc world championship in 1978, 79 and 80, and who’s been running his own racing team for the last two decades, says, ‘We have a factory and we have 30 people. We do some things in World Superbikes already, and if that were my only option, I’d have to take it. I’d like to have my guys working and keep the business intact.’

The World Superbikes series happens to be doing very well, with strong commitments from many manufacturers. Apart from the existing players – Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki, Kawasaki and Ducati – others are also looking at getting in. Aprilia, KTM, BMW and MV Agusta want to get involved and are already developing motorcycles for WSBK. So someone with Kenny’s experience could well look at hitching along with one of the new entrants.

‘I’ll have a business decision to take at the end of the season and see what we do,’ says Kenny, speaking to MCN. ‘We’d take a step back in terms of building what we do for our MotoGP project and transfer our knowledge that to whatever we could around the rules of World Superbikes,’ he adds. We, at Faster and Faster, admire his spirit and his commitment to motorcycle racing and we wish King Kenny the very best in whatever he chooses to do.

Also see:
2007 MotoGP race reports, features, interviews and hi-res wallpaper
MotoGP: 250cc class to make way for 600cc four-strokes in 2010...
Are electronics ruining MotoGP? Riders speak out!
Colin Edwards: "Yamaha know they have to improve!"
Video: Suzuki RG500 Barry Sheene replica...
Who's the fastest motorcycle racer in the world?
Kevin Schwantz interviews Valentino Rossi!
Who are your motorcycling heroes?

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