Honda test rider Kousuke Akiyoshi is to take the place of the injured Hiroshi Aoyama at Interwetten Honda for the next two MotoGP races.
Aoyama has been diagnosed with a fracture to his T12 vertebrae following his violent crash in the warm-up at Silverstone last weekend. Team boss Daniel Epp said it would be some time before the 250cc champion was fit to return.
"It really is a pity that Hiro had this nasty crash in Silverstone and that he injured himself so badly, so he will be out for the next couple of months – especially now his learning process was really good and he was consistently getting better," Epp said. "We hope he will have a quick recovery and that he will be back with us as strong as he was before as soon as possible."
Akiyoshi made four MotoGP starts as a wild-card rider with Suzuki when he was part of its test lineup before switching to Honda last season. He is confirmed at Interwetten for Assen and Catalunya, but Epp said the team had yet to choose a long-term substitute.
"In the meantime, we are looking for a stable replacement," he said. "At the moment we don't have a rider apart from Assen and Barcelona, and we are looking for a suitable solution."