By Dennis Chung
Honda Racing Corporation has signed Dani Pedrosa to a two-year contract extension that would see the 30-year-old rider continue racing for the Repsol Honda MotoGP team through the 2018 season.
Pedrosa raced in nothing but Repsol orange since joining the premier class in 2006 but his association with Honda spans his entire Grand Prix career, going back to 2001 with several seasons in the 250 and 125 GP classes.
“We’re very pleased to renew our contract with Dani, and we really appreciate his loyalty to Honda and HRC,” says Shuhei Nakamoto, HRC Executive Vice President. “We’ve been working together for many years, but we always see in Dani the same passion and dedication. His experience is very important for helping our technicians to develop our bike, and we’ll do our best to help him to demonstrate all his talent!”
Yamaha was rumored to have been courting Pedrosa to replace the departing Jorge Lorenzo but the signing suggests Yamaha will instead turn to Maverick Vinales. The 2015 rookie of the year earned his first MotoGP podium at Le Mans for Ecstar Suzuki and is expected to make the official jump to Yamaha in the next few days.
Honda will now turn its attention to a new contract for Pedrosa’s teammate, Marc Marquez. The double-World Champion is expected to sign a contract extension with Honda, likely ahead of the Catalunya Grand Prix on June 5.
Dani Pedrosa World Championship Statistics
- Starts: 171
- Podiums: 101 (28 x 1st, 38 x 2nd, 35 x 3rd)
- Poles: 28
- Fastest Race Laps: 41
- Best World Championship positions: 2nd (2007, 2010, 2012), 3rd (2008, 2009, 2013)
- Starts: 32
- Podiums: 24 (15 x 1st, 8 x 2nd, 1 x 3rd)
- Poles: 9
- Fastest Race Laps: 15
- World Champion: 2004, 2005
- Starts: 46
- Podiums: 17 (8 x 1st, 4 x 2nd, 5 x 3rd)
- Poles: 9
- Fastest Race Laps: 5
- World Champion: 2003
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