The John Hopkins saga is over. An announcement has been made. The time, place and method used to make the announcement exemplified just why Hopper's decision to return to the AMA or move to MotoGP has become such a saga. For at the Anaheim Supercross round on Sunday, John Hopkins announced to the assembled crowd that he would be racing the M4 Suzuki GSX-R 1000 in the AMA Pro American Superbike class for 2010. This news was then disseminated further by Cycle World's managing editor Matthew Miles, who posted the following tweet on Cycle World's official Twitter page:
John Hopkins just announced to the crowd at Anaheim that he will race an M4 Suzuki GSX-R1000 in AMA Pro American Superbike in 2010. MPM
Hopkins had previously made a verbal commitment to the FB Corse team, who are developing their three-cylinder MotoGP prototype, designed by Oral Engineering and based on the engine originally built for BMW's stillborn MotoGP effort. The role would primarily be that of test rider, with an unknown number of races as a wildcard entry. That commitment was contingent on Hopper being able to test the bike before signing a contract, but a number of circumstances prevented that from happening.
Meanwhile, Hopkins and his manager Bob Moore have been negotiating with Team Hammer for Hopper to ride the M4 Suzuki in the AMA's American Superbike series, and it looks like the chance to race an entire season on a competitive bike has won out. Hopkins' management is yet to issue an official statement, but telling a packaged Anaheim stadium is as close to 100% definite as you can get.