Author: Oli Rushby Pic: Tim Keeton Posted: 03 Mar 2016
John Hopkins has likened Yamaha’s YZF-R1 to a MotoGP bike after his first outing on the ePayMe Tommy Hill Motorsport bike at Cartagena this morning.
After just one 20-minute session on the bike, Hopkins came back to the pits beaming with positivity having already been able to feel the Yamaha’s potential.
Likening the stiffness of the chassis to the MotoGP bikes he rode with Suzuki and Kawasaki, Hopkins believes he can use his experience from those days to excel with the Tommy Hill squad this year.
“It’s amazing, I love it,” Hopkins told Bike Social after stepping off the bike. “It felt so smooth and the power delivery is amazing. There’s a lot we have to do to get the rider position and kind of everyday feeling on a new bike but first impressions are awesome.
“It definitely feels more like a Japanese bike but chassis wise it feels similar to what I used to ride in MotoGP. It’s very rigid, stiff and nice. I can’t wait to get more laps on it.”
Hopkins impressed towards the end of last season aboard the Moto Rapido Ducati, taking a podium in the final round at Brands Hatch, and is confident of building on that this season as he looks to make another attack on the British title.
“With that feeling, I really hope it’s a bike that’s going to suit me. At the end of last year my priority was to try and get on a Yamaha after seeing it close up and being right behind it at the end of the season. I saw how Josh was riding it and thought it was a bike I’d really be able to excel on so I’m happy to have that chance.”
Watch out for a more in-depth feature with Hopkins as he completes his first day of testing later today.