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May 22, 2003

You're Not A Teenager Anymore, John Hopkins

<BR><BR>Copyright 2003, Roadracing World Publishing, Inc.<BR><BR>Suzuki MotoGP racer John "Hopper" Hopkins turns 20 years old today.<BR><BR>Hopkins was born May 22, 1983 in Ramona, California, shortly after his parents, Roy and Linda, emigrated from Acton, London, England. Hopkins' father, an Isle of Man TT winner, passed away when John was 12 years old. Hopkins' mother resides at the emerging star's ranch in Ramona, California.<BR><BR>Hopkins got his AMA Pro road racing license when he turned 16 in 1999, immediately started finishing well in AMA 600cc Supersport and 750cc Supersport races and won the 1999 Aprilia Challenge Cup Championship. In 2000, Hopkins won the AMA 750cc Supersport Championship and also won seven out of 12 Formula USA Unlimited Superbike races. In 2001, Hopkins won the AMA Formula Xtreme Championship and tested with the Red Bull Yamaha 500cc Grand Prix team.<BR><BR>At age 18, Hopkins joined the Red Bull Yamaha team for the 2002 FIM MotoGP World Championship and scored points in 12 of 15 race starts with a best qualifying result of sixth (Catalunya, Donington Park), and a best race finish of seventh (Assen).<BR>
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