Doohan to race Schumacher AND Button

Five-time world motorcycle champ takes on F1 drivers in China

Five-time MotoGP World Champion Mick Doohan will return to the race track this November, when the biking legend competes amongst motorsport stars including Michael Schumacher and Jenson Button at The Race of Champions, to be held in the Bird’s Nest Stadium in Beijing.

Doohan, who won five consecutive titles at motorcycle racing’s highest level from 1994-1998, will team up with fellow Aussie Jamie Whincup, the reigning Australian V8 Supercars Champion, in The ROC Nations Cup on Tuesday 3 November. Both racers will then compete for individual glory in The Race of Champions on Wednesday 4 November.

“The Race of Champions is a really fun event,” said Doohan. “In June I raced in Portugal at the ROC Legends and had a great time, so I’m really looking forward to taking part at the World Finals in Beijing, I can only imagine how good it will be! I’ve got a great team-mate in Jamie Whincup for the ROC Nations Cup so we’ll be giving it our best shot to win the crown for Australia.”

Doohan is the latest in a list of famous names from the world of two-wheeled motorsport who have taken part in The Race of Champions, with others including seven-time MotoGP Champion Valentino Rossi, triple World Superbike Champion Troy Bayliss and multiple X-Games gold medallist Travis Pastrana.

Whincup, who has won Australia’s legendary Bathurst 1000 touring car race for the past three years, said he was eager to enter The Race of Champions once he learned it wouldn’t clash with his V8 Supercar commitments.

“I have always wanted to look at the possibility of doing one-off events providing they don’t interrupt our program and preparation at TeamVodafone,” said Whincup, who currently leads the 2009 V8 Supercar Championship by 171 points.

Reigning V8 Supercars Champion Whincup has won the Bathurst 1000 race for the past three years

“It’s going to be an awesome event. I will get to race some amazing cars against the likes of Schumacher and Button, which is incredibly exciting.

“It will be great to mix it with these guys and find out what makes them tick. It’s all about having fun and hopefully I can help to further raise the profile of V8 Supercars and Australian motorsport in the process.”

Fredrik Johnsson, President of Event Organisers IMP, said of the two drivers:

“It’s great to have Mick and Jamie in The Race of Champions – Mick is a big name in motorsport and Jamie is a great Australian talent – you don’t win the Bathurst 1000 three times in a row without being quick - I’m sure they’ll make a great pairing for Australia.”