Colin Edwards announces retirement

The 40-year-old will retire at the end of the 2014 MotoGP season

THE 'Texas Tornado' Colin Edwards has announced today during the Circuit of the America's press conference that he is to retire from motorbike racing at the end of the 2014 MotoGP season.

The 40-year-old has been a professional racer for the past 22 years, 11 of which have been spent in the MotoGP paddock having accumulated 12 podiums after becoming the World Superbike Champion in 2000 and 2002.

Currently riding for the NGM Forward Racing team, Edwards said: 'In testing this year I could see that I need to change my riding style and it is against my instinct to ride differently so that has had an effect.

'I want to spend more time with my wife and my children and of course I want to say thanks to Yamaha and everyone who has helped me in my career.'

Current MotoGP World Champion Marc Marquez commented on the American's retirement stating: 'Colin started riding at the top when I was just two years old. I hope I can ride for as long as he has and I think he can be really proud of his career.'

Other MotoGP riders including nine-time World Champion Valentino Rossi expressed his sadness regarding Edwards' retirement during the press conference: 'I am very sad about the news of Colin's retirement as he is one of my best friends in the paddock. He is a great guy and a great rider.'

As a fellow American Nicky Hayden concluded: 'I always look at Colin and admire the energy he has with so many miles and so many years behind him.

'It’s a shame to be losing a fellow American from the sport. I hope he takes it easy for the rest of the year and takes it easy on the rest of us!'