Hiroshi Aoyama is one of the most experienced riders in MotoGP™, having spent half his life traveling the many circuits of the world. Unlike most of the riders in MotoGP, motorcycles never intrigued Aoyama as a child. It was not until his father convinced him to give them a try at the age of five, when he rode his first pocket bike!
The rest is history –it was romance! Aoyama than starting riding at a local karting circuit near where he grew up and soon enough watching him ride his bike became the main event on weekends.
Date of Birth: October 25, 1981
Birth Place: Ichihara, Japan
Team: Castrol Honda
Machine: Honda CBR1000RR
After racing with pocket bikes, “Hiro” at age fourteen hopped on to minibikes to continue racing. He won the Kanto district championship in 1996 and 1997 and the following year he moved onto 125cc and 250cc machinery. In 1999, he made his Japanese Championship debut on a 125cc Honda but he quickly moved on to a 250cc that eventually opened the gates to international competition.
In 2000, 2001 and 2002 he gained exceptional experience and ended up finishing as the championship runner-up twice. In 2003, he turned heads when he captured the quarter-litre title. However, it was his pole position and second place in the Grand Prix of Japan at Suzuka that really turned the heads of spectators and he was given the opportunity as a full-time 250cc GP rider for 2004.
According to MotoGP.com, campaigning with Honda and KTM between 2004 and 2008, he took eight victories and never finished lower than seventh overall, winning the 2009 250 World Championship - thus becoming the last ever winner of the class before its replacement by Moto2™.
Fun Facts!Favorite Actress: Catherine Zeta-Jones
Favorite Actor: Bruce Lee
Favorite Animal: Cat
Favorite Color: Red
Favorite Season: Summer
Hiro later moved to Barcelona where he signed as Dani Pedrosa’s teammate on the Telefonica Movistar team with direct backing from Honda. In 2010, Hiro was the lone Japanese rider competing in MotoGP, his debut season saw him achieve two podiums in Japan and Qatar, finishing sixth overall. Even though his rookie season went well, he suffered a severe injury from a crash at Silverstone that caused him to miss six races.
In 2011, he joined the San Carlo Honda Gresini team, claiming a best finish of fourth at the Spanish GP. The following year was difficult but a learning experience for the Japanese rider, but he returned the next season with high hopes. Unfortunately in 2013, he suffered a hand-injury that made driving nearly impossible.
For 2014, he mades the switch to Power Electronics Aspar where, alongside 2006 World Champion Nicky Hayden, he will drive the new Honda RCV1000R machine.
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