December 22, 2005 - Honda has decided to award the third*1 Honda Racing Scholarship*2, aimed at fostering young Japanese riders, to Shuhei Aoyama (age 21, Chiba Prefecture native), GP250cc class champion of the 2005 All-Japan Road Race Championship Series.
Aoyama is expected to take part in all 250cc class races of the 2006 Road Racing World Championship Grand Prix as a member of Repsol Honda Team 250 (Manager: Alberto Puig).
Comments from Aoyama:
"I worked hard all year to take the championship (of the All-Japan Championship) so that I could meet the scholarship conditions, so I am really happy about this decision. I would like to express my heartfelt thanks to our team, the sponsors and the fans for providing me with so much support in so many ways. I am determined to try my best to meet my next goal of winning the World Championship."
Comments from Hiroshi Oshima, Operating Officer for Corporate Communications and Motor Sports, Honda Motor Co., Ltd.:
“Shuhei Aoyama became GP250 class champion at the current season All-Japan Road Race Championship Series, with an overwhelming six wins out of a total of seven races. We look forward to his further progress and achievements on the global stage."
Shuhei Aoyama Profile
|Date of Birth:||December 5, 1984|
|Height/Weight:||165 cm/56 kg|
|Career Highlights:||Began pocketbike-riding at age 3
|2001:||Ranked 8th in the GP125 class of the All-Japan Road Race Championship
(Rookie of the Year)
|2002:||Ranked 4th in the GP125 class of the All-Japan Road Race Championship|
|2003:||Champion of the GP125 class of the All-Japan Road Race Championship|
|2004:||Ranked 2nd in the GP250 class of the All-Japan Road Race Championship
(Rookie of the Year)
|2005:||Champion of the GP250 class of the All-Japan Road Race Championship|
- *1The first recipient of the Honda Racing Scholarship was Hiroshi Aoyama and the second was Yuki Takahashi.
- *2Honda Racing Scholarship is a scholarship established in 2004 by Honda for fostering rider talent. The purpose of the scholarship is to develop young Japanese riders who can compete for the podium at prestigious events around the world. The scholarship provides these riders with the opportunity and environment necessary to take part in 250cc class races of the World Road Racing World Championship Grand Prix (WGP) hosted by the Federation Internationale de Motorcyclisme (FIM).
Eligibility for the scholarship: Any rider aged 22 or below who has become champion of, or achieved similar results in, the GP250 class of the All-Japan Road Race Championship Series on a Honda vehicle with record-breaking or equivalent race time for each course or race. The scholarship enables the rider to take part in the WGP 250cc class races as a member of the team specified by Honda Racing Corporation for up to two years. The premise is that for the third year and thereafter, the recipient is expected to pursue a career independently.