Jul 5, 2002
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<BR><BR>Copyright 2002, Roadracing World Publishing, Inc.<BR><BR>By David Swarts<BR><BR>Alex Hofmann will fill in for injured West Honda Pons MotoGP racer Loris Capirossi for the British Grand Prix July 12-14 and the German Grand Prix July 19-21, according to a press release issued by West Honda Pons. <BR><BR>Capirossi crashed at Assen during the Dutch GP, breaking two bones in his right forearm. According to the West Honda Pons release, Capirossi has been instructed by doctors to sit out for 20 days of "complete rest", forcing the Italian rider to miss the next two Grands Prix. With the mid-season break following the German race, West Honda Pons officials expect Capirossi back at full fitness for the Czech Republic GP in August.<BR><BR>The release also announced Hofmann as Capirossi's replacement with Team General Manager Alfonso "Sito" Pons calling Hofmann "the best available rider".<BR><BR>A veteran of 45 250cc Grand Prix starts, Hofmann was left without a ride for 2002 when his sponsor backed out just prior to the season. Since that time the 22-year-old German has tested on Kenny Roberts' Proton KR3 and raced as a fill-in for Garry McCoy on the Red Bull Yamaha YZR500 at Catalunya and the Assen. <BR><BR>Due to McCoy's return to Red Bull for the GP at Donington Park, Hofmann was available to take the West Honda Pons offer. Now Hofmann will have to adapt from a Yamaha YZR500 to a Honda NSR500 and from Dunlops to Michelins in the course of two, back-to-back race meetings.<BR><BR>