HRC split with Doohan

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The Honda Racing Corporation has announced that Mick Doohan will not return as its General Manager in 2005.

The Australian five-times 500cc world champion’s contract expired at the end of 2004. He has been linked with the Honda team since he first raced on an NSR500 in 1989. Since his retirement from racing in 1999, Doohan had been an advisor to Repsol team riders and team staff, including mentoring Valentino Rossi’s move into the Blue Riband class.

The decision not to renew his contract was announced at the end of the Sepang MotoGP test session by HRC managing director Satoru Horiike. The decision is part of an overhaul of the Honda race team following the departure of Jeremy Burgess and many of Doohan’s championship-winning crew to the Yamaha team at the start of the 2004 season to work with Rossi.

Other changes to the structure at HRC include the appointment of Tsutomi Ishii to general manager, Makoto Tanaka to Respol Honda team manager, and Erv Kanemoto as technical consultant to 2005 riders Max Biaggi and Nicky Hayden.

MCN Staff

By MCN Staff