MotoGP: Repsol Honda boss Livio Suppo to step down

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Repsol Honda team boss Livio Suppo has announced the day after the final round of the 2017 MotoGP season that he will step down with immediate effect only 24 hours after taking his sixth world championship as a team boss.

Suppo spent ten years at Ducati before making the move to HRC, successfully guiding the squad to their first and only world championship with Casey Stoner in 2007. He then made the move to the Japanese firm, becoming the first European to head their factory Grand Prix effort.

Stoner soon followed him to Honda, winning the 2011 world title with the team before retiring and being replaced by Marc Marquez in 2013, starting a relationship that concluded yesterday with their fourth world title together.

“It’s a life decision, after 22 years in this paddock. This paddock has given me a lot and Honda and HRC have given me a lot in those years, but at the end of the day I feel like it’s the right decision to leave now even though I have one year left in my contract. Honda have everything under control for next year, the riders and sponsors are under contract, and most of my work is already done. I’m sure that it is the best choice for me and my family.”

With the news coming as a huge shock to the paddock, Honda have yet to confirm who will replace Suppo, admitting only that they’re still considering options.

Simon Patterson

By Simon Patterson

MotoGP and road racing reporter, photographer, videographer