Motorcycle News (UK) - - Front Page - By Stephen Dav­i­son MCN ROADS RE­PORTER

Guy Martin has had his first ride on the su­per­bike spec Fire­blade SP2 that he hopes will take him to Su­per­bike and Se­nior TT glory in June. The Lin­colnshire racer com­pleted two days of test­ing at Cas­tle Combe on the 2017 Fire­blade along­side Honda Rac­ing team- mate John Mcguin­ness. Mcguin­ness’ test was cut short by a crash that left him with a dis­lo­cated thumb but Martin en­joyed dozens of trou­ble-free laps on the new bike, which was only com­pleted the day be­fore the test.

Push­ing hard on track and in­tensely en­gaged in dis­cus­sions with his me­chan­ics in the garage, Guy used the high speed turns and bumpy sur­face of the Wilt­shire cir- cuit to find a base set­ting for his TT su­per­bike races. Mak­ing a re­turn to Dun­lop rub­ber, the lorry me­chan­ic­cum-tele­vi­sion star had sev­eral new com­pounds and con­struc­tions at his dis­posal.

“The new bikes ar­rived later than we ex­pected,” Honda race boss Neil Tuxworth said.

“Con­sid­er­ing the me­chan­ics were still work­ing on them the night be­fore the test we are happy with the progress we have made over the two days.”

“With the roads bikes run­ning kit ig­ni­tion they are eas­ier to set up than the BSB su­per­bikes that run the Motec sys­tem. We will come back to Cas­tle Combe in a few weeks time and that will be the im­por­tant test be­cause we will have the full TT spec op­er­at­ing on both su­per­bikes.”

Guy, who is still seek­ing his maiden TT vic­tory, has a full pro­gramme of out­ings sched­uled as part of his prepa­ra­tion with the new su­per­bike. Aside from the sec­ond Cas­tle Combe out­ing he will also com­pete in the Ir­ish Na­tional events at Tan­dragee (April 21-22) and Cook­stown (April 28-29). Trav­el­ling by him­self with a su­per­stock spec ver­sion of the new Fire­blade in the back of his van, Guy will make his first ap­pear­ance at Tan­dragee, in County Ar­magh, since 2005 when he raced the Robin­son Con­crete Suzuki.

Tuxworth added: “Af­ter he races at Cook­stown Guy will travel to Oul­ton Park BSB (April 29-May 1) to race in the Su­per­stock class along­side John. Af­ter his year away from rac­ing, Guy needs six sig­na­tures on his race li­cence ahead of the TT. With the North West 200 fol­low­ing the Ir­ish Na­tional out­ings he will have more than enough.”

‘The new bikes ar­rived late, but we are happy with the progress’ NEIL TUXWORTH HONDA RACE BOSS

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