General TT and road racing gossip for 2021

Discussion in 'Racing' started by Gone Troppo, Dec 14, 2019.

  1. Gone Troppo

    Gone Troppo Somewhat bemused observer Supporter

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    From iomttraces.com

    HILLIER AND BOURNEMOUTH KAWASAKI CONFIRM SPLIT

    After a ten-year relationship that included 14 TT podiums and a TT Race win, Bournemouth Kawasaki have today confirmed that James Hillier will not be with the team for the 2020 season.
    In a tweet published on Saturday morning, the Bournemouth Kawasaki team said: “After an amazing 10 years it’s time for James Hillier to depart for pastures new – what an amazing journey we have had. Massive thanks to James and his family and the best of luck in 2020. James will always be a huge part of [our] history. #racingfriendsfamilygreatmemoriesforever.”

    The news does not come as a great surprise, with Hillier acknowledging that he has been curious to ride for other manufacturers for a number of years.

    Speaking at Motorcycle Live before the split had been announced, he said: “There’s nothing wrong with what I have and I do believe in it, but there’s a part of me that wants to try something different and I don’t want to get to the end of my career having not done that and wish I had.”

    However, the winner of the 2013 Lightweight TT also acknowledged that the TT rider market is more competitive than ever and finding a new team that can deliver the package he needs could be difficult.

    “There’s almost more good riders than there are good rides at the moment and with the TT it has to be a right choice and it’s a long year to wait to have a go on something else so I don’t want to jump into something that might not be quite right” he added.

    With the rider line-ups already confirmed at Honda Racing, Padgetts Motorcycles, Smiths Racing and Silicone Engineering, it will be interesting to see where the 34-year old ends up and whether the Bournemouth Kawasaki Team - who typically run a one-rider team - will be back in 2020.


    Catch the full interview with James Hillier at Motorcycle Live here.
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  2. south

    south Long timer

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    I'm interested to see how this all pans out; Hillier's regularly been there or thereabouts on the Bournemouth Kawi, but always just a bit off the very top guys, so I'd be keen to see him on a known/proven winning ride and see how he goes and maybe answer the question whether it's been the bike or the rider that's been missing just that little bit.
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  3. Gone Troppo

    Gone Troppo Somewhat bemused observer Supporter

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    Yes, interesting. Mind you, Deano seems to do well on green...:D
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  4. Gone Troppo

    Gone Troppo Somewhat bemused observer Supporter

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    Of course, the other big question - will McPint be on a Ducati?
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  5. south

    south Long timer

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    Here lately, yes indeed--which is why I had to go back and quickly amend my post from "on the Kawi" to "on the Bournemouth Kawi" :-). Harrison and the (largely non-green ;)) Silicon Engineering Kawi have definitely found form though.
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  6. stk0308

    stk0308 Long timer

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    Headlines I've seen pass through my feed lead me to believe that:
    1) Norton still has a contract with him. Whether they can honor it will be an interesting matter. And in what classes.
    2) John says no one is ringing him up to see if he's available to ride
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  7. Gone Troppo

    Gone Troppo Somewhat bemused observer Supporter

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    Yes, saw that...interesting.
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  8. Gone Troppo

    Gone Troppo Somewhat bemused observer Supporter

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    James Hillier, David Johnson and Ian Hutchinson are top contenders to lead OMG Racing's maiden roads campaign in 2020
    [​IMG]
    James Hillier is looking for a new challenge in 2020 after parting company from the Bournemouth Kawasaki team after a decade.
    KYLE WHITE
    Email
    Published: 21:14Wednesday 18 December 2019


    Several top riders are in line to spearhead Bennetts British Superbike team OMG Racing’s international road racing debut in 2020.

    The team will run two riders in the Superbike and Superstock classes on BMW S1000RR machinery at the North West 200 and Isle of Man TT and will also contest the Supersport races, with a Yamaha R6 the machine of choice.

    [​IMG]
    Ian Hutchinson is set to ride for a new team next year after two seasons with Honda Racing.

    OMG Racing remains fully committed to its BSB programme, with the returning Luke Mossey and former MotoGP rider Héctor Barberá at the helm, while Billy McConnell will compete in the National Superstock 1000 Championship.


    An announcement on Wednesday confirmed the team’s exciting new plans for next year, with the first rider in the road racing line-up due to be confirmed on Thursday morning.

    The obvious contenders include James Hillier, who announced recently that he had opted to take on a new challenge next year following a decade with Pete Extance’s Bournemouth Kawasaki team, while Australian rider David Johnson is also a free agent after his contract with Honda Racing was not renewed for 2020.

    Ulsterman Glenn Irwin and up-and-coming star Davey Todd were revealed as Honda’s new-look international roads team in November, taking over from Johnson and 16-time TT winner Ian Hutchinson.

    [​IMG]
    Aussie David Johnson rode for Honda Racing this year but was not retained by the team for a second season.
    Yorkshireman Hutchinson rode a BMW S1000RR at the Macau Grand Prix under the Team Milwaukee by SMT banner and is another big-name rider who has yet to officially reveal his plans for next season.

    OMG team principal Paul Curran said he had signed “household TT names” to lead the team’s foray into international road racing and Hutchinson, Johnson and Hillier certainly fit that bill, with Johnson and Hillier the most likely line-up.



    Curran said: “This is obviously a huge announcement as we prepare to take on our first ever roads season as a team.

    “Road racing is something which has been on our radar for a while now but was a big investment in terms of time and resources, the team ownership agreed that it was something we couldn’t pass up on though – so it became a case of assembling a team capable of winning.

    “Our focus and commitment to British Superbikes won’t be changing, so our supporters can expect us to give 100 percent to both the BSB and the roads across the season.

    “We have some vastly experienced people coming on-board to help us develop behind the scenes, and on the bikes themselves – some household TT names – which we’ll be announcing over the coming days,” he added.



    “We’re not competing just for the fun of it, we’re racing to win and to shake up the road racing competitions as we have done on the circuits.”

    [​IMG]
    The top 30 fastest road racers in the world - ever!
    Northern Ireland’s Josh Elliott secured OMG Racing’s maiden BSB victory this season in the opening round of the championship at Silverstone. The team only joined the series in 2018 but has made impressive progress over the past two seasons.
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  9. south

    south Long timer

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    BMWs for the big bike classes and Yamahas for the middleweights--definitely going with winning machinery.

    Johnson lands on the 1st seat; have to wait 'til tomorrow (Brit time) for the announcement of their 2nd rider, but gotta believe it's Hillier--unless your name is "Zarco", you don't jump unless you've already got a place to land:

    https://www.motorcyclenews.com/amp/sport/tt-road-races/omg-racing/
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  10. south

    south Long timer

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  11. Gone Troppo

    Gone Troppo Somewhat bemused observer Supporter

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  12. Scoozi

    Scoozi Long timer

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  13. Gone Troppo

    Gone Troppo Somewhat bemused observer Supporter

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    Interesting that BMW are throwing their factory support behind Hickey...not Dunlop...
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  14. Gone Troppo

    Gone Troppo Somewhat bemused observer Supporter

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    Kinda sorta TT...awesome...

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  15. south

    south Long timer

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    How so? Hickman's been the man on top for a bit now and has shown no signs of losing that status; hell, in the pit interviews after the Macau fiasco, Hickey basically said he wasn't hardly trying and was still so much faster than the rest, and Rutter, the (eventual) "winner" echoed/affirmed Hickman's claim of superior pace.

    I'm a MD fan, but Dunlop is coming off injury, and, perhaps more of a factor, he's always been a bit of a (hate to borrow from NASCAR, but it fits) "Suitcase Jake"/hired gun; I don't know if he wears out his welcome, or just because he certainly isn't much of a PR/"company" man (e.g., certainly not like (personable/outgoing) Hutchinson--surely a factor in their rivalry), or if MD is just always looking for a better/more competitive package. Whatever the reason (I tend to think it's the (lack of) PR angle), Dunlop just doesn't seem to forge long-term (public) alliances with any of the manufacturers--hell, I think his strongest brand/factory tie-in may be with Paton, likely because, in typical MD fashion and despite his size, he gets more out of the bike than anyone else, and Paton really wants/needs those TT wins.
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  16. Gone Troppo

    Gone Troppo Somewhat bemused observer Supporter

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    True.
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  17. stk0308

    stk0308 Long timer

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    You gotta read MD's book to get an insight. There were a few moves he made that he sorta regrets. But, there were a couple corporate decisions that went against him. He makes no excuses for trying to get a better deal. As a Dunlop he knows that this job can end in death at any moment. So get as much as you can, when you can.

    Hutchy always seemed about 2 seconds away from whinging. Maybe it's just his normal speaking voice. But, man, he always sounds on the edge of throwing a fit, to me.
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  18. Gone Troppo

    Gone Troppo Somewhat bemused observer Supporter

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    Yes, MD is very driven, and doesn't care about the corporate BS...a sponsor's nightmare.

    I hear what you say re Hutchy's voice...but that is just the way he speaks...
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  19. Gone Troppo

    Gone Troppo Somewhat bemused observer Supporter

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    Court reaches decision over Guy Martin prosecution
    Here's what officials have decided

    • 09:31, 27 DEC 2019

    [​IMG]
    Guy Martin (Image: Grimsby Telegraph)


    TV celebrity Guy Martin will no longer face charges for having a false driving licence after the case against him was dramatically dropped before his trial next month.

    The former motorcycle racer Martin, 38, who combines his television career with working as a lorry mechanic, was accused of possession of a fake Irish licence and using it to alter his genuine UK licence to allow him to drive HGVs.

    The case against Martin was dropped on Christmas Eve after a hearing at Lincoln Crown Court heard Mr Martin does not always apply common sense and may have been taken in because he was vulnerable.

    Proceedings had hung over the popular TV star for over a year and Martin was scheduled to face a three day jury trial starting at Lincoln Crown Court on Monday, January 6.

    But in a dramatic turn the Crown Prosecution Service offered no evidence against Mr Martin and he was formally acquitted.

    Mr Martin, of Barnetby, Lincs, had denied possession of a document with intent to deceive between December 4, 2017, and May 15, 2018, relating to "a document so closely resembling an Irish driving licence as to be calculated to deceive".

    He also denied that between 1 March and 15 May 2018 he made a false statement by claiming he was the holder of an Irish driving licence entitling him to drive certain categories of vehicles for the purpose of obtaining a British licence to drive some categories of vehicles.

    Mr Martin, from North Lincolnshire , had always said that he believed he passed a test while working in Northern Ireland and subsequently received a licence which he believed was genuine.

    Judge Simon Hirst said: “There have been some medical reports submitted.

    "The prosecution accept that it is conceivable that Mr Martin did think this was a genuine licence.

    “On the Crown offering no evidence I therefore enter not guilty verdicts in respect of both matters in respect of Mr Guy Martin.”

    He was excused attendance and was not present at the brief hearing on Christmas Eve when the decision not to proceed was announced.

    Michael Cranmer-Brown, explaining the reasoning for the decision, said that psychiatrists who examined Martin on behalf of the defence and the prosecution both came to the same conclusion.

    He said: “There have been two psychiatrists who have seen Mr Martin. The first, instructed by the defence and agreed by the prosecution, said that he does not always apply what others may refer to as commonsense. He has a vulnerability to take what people say at face value.”


    [​IMG]
    Guy Martin recently recreated the Great Escape stunt on TV
    Mr Cranmer-Brown said that Martin’s autism also made him “vulnerable enough for others to see him as an easy target”.

    He added: “It may well be that he was taken in by somebody. We therefore accept that he didn’t possess that document with intent to deceive.”

    Explaining the original basis for bringing the prosecution , Mr Cranmer-Brown said: “The defendant’s UK driving licence and what purported to be an Eire driving licence were submitted on his behalf to the DVLA here in the UK for the entitlement of the Eire licence to be added to the UK licence for reasons that were to do with his work.

    “It turned out that the Eire licence which had an entitlement for him to drive HGVs was in fact a fake licence. It came to the attention of the authorities that it was problematic.

    "A check showed there were no records of a Guy Martin with the equivalent of the DVLA in Eire and the driving licence number related to a different person.

    “When he was interviewed the defendant gave an explanation that at first blush seemed hard to accept.”

    Simon Davis, representing Mr Martin, said: “I say nothing about the facts as instructed to do so. Although the decision is made late in the day, thankfully it is made in advance of the trial date.”

    Martin has been given three months to reclaim any travel costs he incurred as a result of the proceedings.

    He made no application to recover his legal costs.
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  20. Gone Troppo

    Gone Troppo Somewhat bemused observer Supporter

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    Hicky heads for R6 Yam for Supersport.....:-) courtesy BSN

    Isle of Man TT star Peter Hickman and the Smiths Racing team will switch from Triumph to Yamaha power for this year’s roads Supersport races.

    Although they have had success with the triple in past seasons, a lack of parts to keep the now-ageing bike competitive aren’t available so a change to the R6 has been necessary.

    “Finally, we’ve made the decision to change from the Triumph to the Yamaha in the Supersport class for the International road races which will obviously be a bit different to the last three years,” said Hickman.

    “We’ve had an awesome time with the Triumph and it’s been absolutely brilliant with the win at last year’s TT and all three victories at the Ulster Grand Prix being phenomenal.

    The little Daytona has done a fantastic job but, unfortunately, it’s a little bit long in the tooth now so to try and move with the times and keep up with what everyone else is doing we’ve decided to move over to the Yamaha.
    #20