Ryan Villopoto has confirmed that he will be racing a factory Kawasaki KX450F for the Monster Energy Kawasaki Racing Team in the FIM MXGP World Championship series for 2015.
Villopoto explains: “I am ready for the next chapter in my career and to accomplish new goals. I’ve never been one to look at the record books so when an opportunity like this comes around, to race against the best in the world and represent USA, I have to see it through. It will be a major change of pace, but I am extremely excited about the opportunity and also to be joined by a former champion like Tyla (Rattray). He knows what is needed to succeed on the world championship stage and I know I can learn a lot from him.”
Monster Energy Kawasaki Racing Team owner Thierry Chizat Suzzoni added: “For 2015, we are very excited to welcome Ryan Villopoto and Tyla Rattray into the Kawasaki Racing Team. It’s a fantastic challenge for the team and we are aware that the 2015 championship organized by Youthsteam is going to be very demanding, but our team is very enthusiastic and has ended this season on a high at the Motocross of Nations so we are going to actively prepare with the goal of taking up this challenge. I would like to thank Kawasaki, Monster Energy and all our partners for helping us to make this project become a reality.”
Kawasaki Motors Europe Racing Manager Steve Guttridge said: “Ryan Villopoto is a truly global motocross star; for fans around the world to see him race on their home tracks will indeed be a privilege. After such dominance in Supercross it is refreshing and characteristically brave to see Ryan take on the world’s best MXGP riders and set his sights on supremacy in this class as well.”
Villopoto has won the Monster Energy AMA Supercross championship the last four years. Replacing Villopoto and Jake Weimer on the US-based Monster Energy Kawasaki team will be Wil Hahn and Davi Millsaps, two former 250cc Supercross champions.
Said Monster Energy Kawasaki Team Manager Dan Fahie: “We are extremely anxious to begin the 2015 season. We have big shoes to fill after winning four-straight supercross titles but I could not be more excited to have both Davi and Wil on the team. Both riders have proven to be top contenders in the 450 class and they are just as enthusiastic as we are to get back racing and on top of the box.”