American teenager John Hopkins was quite ambitious to move directly to the MotoGP class, as the teammate to Yamaha-mounted Gary McCoy. Riding a Yamaha 500 cc V-4 two-stroke this year (we could expect him to be on a four-stroke next year), Hopkins has been improving steadily, without crashing. That last comment is key. Rookies typically crash their brains out in MotoGP (formerly 500 GP), particularly, aboard a 500cc two-stroke. By steadily improving without throwing himself down the road, Hopkins is displaying great maturity.
As good as Hopkins is, America has other great riders who belong in the World championship, including Honda’s Nicky Hayden and Kawasaki’s Eric Bostrom. Eric may be in MotoGP next year aboard the new Kawasaki now being developed, but Hayden may be a few years away from his World championship review.