Motorcycling legend Mick Doohan signs up for ROC 2013 The 2013 Race Of Champions will feature one of the greatest riders in the history of motorcycling as Mick Doohan has signed up for the event at Bangkok’s Rajamangala Stadium on December 14-15.
The Australian dominated his sport in the Nineties, collecting a haul of over 50 wins and five straight 500cc MotoGP world championships for Honda from 1994 to 1998. This glorious run was sandwiched by two serious crashes, the second of which broke his leg in several places and ended his competitive career.
Doohan knows how to handle four-wheeled machinery too – indeed he even tested a Williams F1 car at Barcelona in 1998 – and he has proved his ability at five previous appearances at Race Of Champions events. The Australian took three wins last year and reached the individual quarter-finals before falling to seven-time Formula 1 world champion Michael Schumacher. Now Doohan will be back for more in Bangkok next month, where he will also partner four-time V8 Supercar Champion Jamie Whincup for Team Australia in the ROC Nations Cup.
Doohan said: “It’s a real privilege to be coming back to the Race Of Champions and to have another chance to team up with Jamie, who lives near me on the Gold Coast. Of course it’s tough for a bike racer to come up against so many great drivers but I’ll be determined not to let the side down. I don’t get too much competitive action these days but I have a kart circuit at home and I have a buggy with a 600cc engine so I’ll try to get out on that when I can. The Race Of Champions is friendly off the track but that all evaporates when we’re waiting on the start line so I’d better be prepared…”
Race organizer Fredrik Johnsson added: “It’s brilliant to have Mick back in the line-up for the Race Of Champions. He is a true legend of his sport and he has plenty of skill on four wheels too, as last year’s performance proved. After helping Team Australia to the ROC Nations Cup semi-finals, he reached the individual quarter-finals where he was beaten by Michael Schumacher: no shame in that! So there is every reason for the rest of the field to be wary if they come up against this true motor sport great. We hope plenty of Australians and bike fans will make the trip to cheer him on.”
Held every year since 1988, the Race Of Champions brings together the world’s greatest drivers from motor sport’s main disciplines – including Formula 1, World Rally, Le Mans, MotoGP, Nascar, IndyCar, Touring Cars and the X-Games – and sets them free to battle head-to-head in identical machinery.
ROC 2013 will take place on a specially constructed tarmac track with two parallel lanes winding their way round Bangkok’s Rajamangala Stadium. Drivers pair up for the ROC Nations Cup, this year scheduled for Saturday 14 December, ahead of the individual Race Of Champions on Sunday 15 December.
ROC features stars from all over the world: alongside Doohan and Whincup, seven-time F1 World Champion Michael Schumacher, Le Mans legend Tom Kristensen and 2013 World Rally Champion Sébastien Ogier have already signed up. The rest of the field will be announced in the run-up to next month’s event.
Tickets are now available from www.raceofchampions.com where you can also find further information and access to high-resolution imagery. Sign up for all the latest updates at www.raceofchampions.com, Race Of Champions on Facebook or @raceofchampions and the hashtag #BangROC on Twitter.
Drivers already announced for the 2013 Race Of Champions:
Michael SCHUMACHER, seven-time Formula 1 World Champion
Tom KRISTENSEN, nine-time Le Mans 24 Hours winner, FIA WEC Champion 2013
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