Kenan Sofuoglu To Hang Up His Leathers

Rennie Scaysbrook | May 7, 2018

Kenan Sofuoglu To Hang Up His Leathers—Kenan Sofuoglu will retire after the upcoming Imola WorldSSP round this weekend.

Kenan Sofuoglu To Hang Up His Leathers

As hard as they come, Sofuoglu’s impact on Turkish road racing has been massive.

The Turkish rider is the most successful in the history of the WorldSSP Championship with five title victories on Honda and Kawasaki machinery and was on track for a sixth title in 2017 until a huge crash at Magny Cours in France saw him sustain a broken pelvis.

Sofuoglu incredibly raced to third at the very next round in Qatar but the title went to Frenchman Lucas Mahias.

He suffered further damage to his hip in a huge crash at the daunting Stoner Corner (turn three) at Phillip Island in 2018 WorldSSP pre-season testing, which forced him to miss the first four rounds of the series.

“In the last couple of months I had a few injuries which made my family very afraid, as well as our President (Recep Tayyip Erdoğan),” Sofuoglu said, who famously rode his Kawasaki to meet the Turkish President in 2013.

“I have decided to retire from racing earlier than I originally thought, but I can’t say I am sad because I have already coached and trained a few Turkish riders who will carry the flag for me.

“I started my racing career 20 years ago, with a goal to race in the world championships, and I have won the world title five times—I am very thankful for that. Many people supported me while winning these titles and I want to thank everyone for that.”

Sofuoglu claimed 43 race victories during his WorldSSP career that saw him take titles for Ten Kate Honda, Lorenzini Kawasaki, and Puccetti Kawasaki. He also spent a single season in WorldSBK for Ten Kate Honda in 2008, and another single season in Moto2 in 2011, scoring a second place at the Assen Moto2 race behind race winner Marc Marquez.

Kenan will continue to be a face within the WorldSBK paddock with Puccetti Kawasaki as a rider coach to young Turkish star Toprak Razgatlioglu and will continue his ride school to help develop the next generation of Turkish riding talent.'

Rennie Scaysbrook | Road Test Editor Our newest member of staff is our Road Test Editor Rennie Scaysbrook. A lifetime rider, the Aussie made the trek across the Pacific to live the dream in the U.S. of A.