John McGuinness (left) is joined by new teammate Conor Cummins (right) with Honda for the 2014 Isle of Man TT Races fuelled by Monster Energy.
Honda Motor Europe today announced its rider line-up for the 2014 Isle of Man TT Races fuelled by Monster Energy. Twenty-time TT winner John McGuinness will be joined by Manxman Conor Cummins to form a two-strong team competing aboard the 2014 Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade in the Dainese Superbike and PokerStars Senior races.
Cummins will also ride for the team in the RL 360 Superstock class. The pair will also compete in the North West 200.
The new road racing squad was revealed as McGuinness and Cummins appeared as team-mates for the first time on the main stage at Motorcycle Live in the UK. The duo promises to pose a serious threat on the roads with the combination of McGuinness’s unrivalled experience and Cummins’s undeniable talent and ambition.
The 2013 Isle of Man TT proved that at 41 years old, McGuinness is still the man to beat on the mountain course as he set a new outright lap record during the Dainese Superbike race and took an epic PokerStars Senior TT victory to rack up his 20th win and 41st podium.
Cummins – who will make his debut for Honda – won the newcomers award at the TT Races and the NW200 in 2006. He secured the first of four TT podiums in 2009, is the third fastest rider in the history of the event and holds the record for the fastest lap from a standing start at 131.511mph. A career-threatening crash during the 2010 TT has done nothing to dampen the 26-year-old’s ambition as he aims to come back fighting with the Honda team.
Honda Europe’s revised commitment to road racing represents a new direction following the successful three-year Honda TT Legends project, which has seen the manufacturer compete in both road racing and the Endurance World Championship under the same banner. The 2014 road-racing team will continue to be run from Louth in Lincolnshire and managed by Neil Tuxworth. Honda’s plans for the 2014 EWC season will be announced shortly.
Neil Tuxworth "We’re pleased to announce our 2014 line-up for the roads and very happy to welcome Conor Cummins to the team. He’s an Isle of Man lad whose father and uncle have raced on the island so the TT in is in his blood. He has a great work ethic and a determination to succeed and I have a lot of admiration for him. He’s back to full fighting fitness following his 2010 crash and, as one of the fastest men ever around the mountain course, he definitely has the ability to win races.
He continued: "The relationship between John and Honda is well-established and proven to bring results. He is by far the most successful current TT rider in terms of wins and podiums and he showed at this year’s TT that he is still the quickest rider around the Isle of Man. We are of course very happy to have him with us again. With John and Conor on board, I believe we are in a very strong position for the 2014 road racing events."
John McGuinness "I’m really glad to be staying with the Honda to continue the strong relationship we’ve built up in road racing over the years. The team is like family to me and it’s important that I have support that I know I can rely on 100%. It’s great news that Conor will be joining the team. I have a lot of respect for him – he’s young, he’s hungry for it and he has so much passion for racing. It will be a pleasure to be his team-mate. This year proved that there’s life in the old dog yet, so I can’t wait to get back on the Fireblade and see what we can do."
Conor Cummins "I am thrilled to bits to be with Honda in 2014. In my eyes this is the absolute pinnacle of road racing. Riding for a team like Honda has been something I’ve been aiming for my whole career so for me this is a huge deal. The team has so much experience and I just want to make the most of the opportunity I’ve been given. I’m really looking forward to racing the new Honda Fireblade and hopefully brining home some good results."