Spaniard makes emotional announcement in Germany.
Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa has announced he’ll retire from the MotoGP World Championship at the conclusion of the 2018 season, bringing an end to his 18-year career.
The announcement comes after Jorge Lorenzo was named to line-up alongside Marc Marquez from 2019, prompting an exit for the 32-year-old Spaniard.
Pedrosa has three world championships to his name in the 125cc and 250cc categories and finished runner-up in the premier MotoGP class on three occasions with 54 wins.
“Next year I won’t compete in the championship, I’ll finish my career in MotoGP this season,” Pedrosa confirmed. “It’s a decision I’ve thought about for a long time and it’s a hard decision because this is the sport I love but despite having good opportunities to keep racing, I feel like I don’t live racing with the same intensity as before and I now have different priorities in my life.
“I would like to express how fortunate I feel to have had this experience and these opportunities in my life, it’s been an amazing life to have been racing for such an important team and in front of all the fans. I achieved way more than I expected and I’m very, very proud of what I’ve done in the sport.
“I’ve fulfilled my dream of becoming a racer and that’s something that I didn’t expect when I was a kid watching TV, watching riders in the World Championship. I would like to take this time to say thanks to Dorna and to Honda for giving me this opportunity way back in 1999, and to all my sponsors who’ve been with me throughout my career.
“I would like also to say thanks to my family, and to all the fans who supported me throughout my career and through the thick and thin, who helped me sending so many messages to overcome difficult things in the past.”
Pedrosa currently sits 12th in the championship standings ahead of this weekend’s ninth round at the Sachsenring circuit in Germany.