Big Eds Blog: Hopkins to replace Smrz in the MCE BSB for Remainder of 2015
Anyone who has followed the MCE BSB for the last few years will be aware of the work Jakub Smrz has put in to the Ducati Panigale to get it to a stage where it is competitive.
With the injury sustained at Snetterton Smrz missed a few vital rounds and his temporary replacement John Hopkins impressed on the Lloyds Ducati and was quite outspoken on how he feels he is the one to get the best out of it.
The news came out this week that the American will be replacing the Czech rider for the remainder of the season, and in true 21st century fashion all involved took to Twitter to comment.
Team owner Steve Moore said to Jakub: "You're a true professional and friend. And very fast!" To which the rider replied "thanks mate! That's racing, things can't always go way you want and timing of my injury wasn't good!!! Good luck boys."
It was replacement rider John Hopkins that gave an even greater display of sportsmanship, commenting on the social media site "I personally wanna wish @KubaSmrz96 all the best for the future & wish I was riding alongside him rather than replacing! Great guy & Rider."
The exchange between all involved was summed up in a tweet from James Ellison, who published a picture of Hopper's tweet and said "Sportsmanship at its best!! This is why I love the motorcycle world I live in. #respect" which I couldn't agree more with, as Hopkins said in a perfect world the team would be a two rider set up, but with monetary restrictions it could not be possible. The logical choice was Hopkins following the momentum he has built in the last few rounds, however I'm sure it was not a difficult choice for Steve Moore to make.
The final tweet was Jakub Smrz, who said "Good night, it's been busy here today and not positive for me. But good to show we do gentlemens sports and respect each other." This exchange demonstrates the extremely tough decisions that have to be made in motorcycle racing, but also the friendship, love and respect that also goes into it. There are a few sports that I could name where something such as this would involve snide remarks and animosity, but our sport has none of that.
I hope to see Smrz back in the paddock soon, not only is he a great rider but a gentleman, too. And best of luck to Hopkins, it's great to have you back and on top form!
07.08.2015 - MCE Insurance