The fate of John Hopkins continues to be clouded in mystery. A week ago, it looked like the former Suzuki and Kawasaki MotoGP rider was headed back to MotoGP, with various sources reporting that Hopper had signed to ride with the fledgling FB Corse MotoGP project.
Yesterday, though, Hopkins' manager told Roadracing World's David Swarts that the deal was far from done. According to the Roadracing World story, Bob Moore confirmed that Hopper was in talks with FB Corse about the Italian team's plans to enter a limited number of MotoGP races as a wildcard, but denied that any contracts had been signed. Hopkins is still considering his options, which include racing in the Superbike class in the AMA Pro series run by the DMG, according to Roadracing World.
Whatever decision Hopkins does end up making, the American is caught between a rock and a hard place. The FB Corse project is still entirely developmental and is unlikely to be competitive, nor will the three or four planned wildcard rides provide much racing for Hopkins to do. However, at least the MotoGP series is stable and well-managed, and even a development ride there is more reliable and stable than the mess which the AMA Pro Racing series has become. Furthermore, the prospects of making the jump back to a world championship series reduced drastically after Ben Spies left and Mat Mladin retired from the AMA.
FB Corse is expected to make an official announcement about the status of their project in January 2010. That announcement is expected to include a rider lineup. Hopkins' future in MotoGP should be finalized by then.