Belfast Telegraph

Fogarty lined up for return to North West 200

By Stephen Simpson

Road racing legend Carl Fogarty will make a guest appearance at this year’s Relentless International North West 200.

It will be four-time world Superbike champion Fogarty’s first visit to the North West since he won both Superbike races in 1993.

The Englishman, who retired from race riding in 2000, will perform demo laps between races on Race Day, Saturday May 19, and he will also be in attendance in the Hospitality marquee.

Speaking about his return to the famous nine-mile circuit, Fogarty, the most successful World Superbike rider of all time, said: “I am really looking forward to coming back to the North West after all these years. I have always been a keen supporter of this great road race and no doubt it will be incredibly nostalgic for me to return to the North West 200.”

Event technical director Mervyn Whyte said, “It is a feather in our cap to bring Carl back to the North West 200. I was instrumental in bringing him here back in 1993 when he thrilled the crowds and we are very much looking forward to having this all-time road racing legend return to the North West 200 to once again wow the spectators.”

Fogarty (pictured) will be supplied with a new Ducati from James Murray of Millsport Motorcycles, Ballymoney.

Meanwhile, Splitlath Redmond have confirmed Antrim’s John Laverty and Frenchman Florian Marino as their line-up for the 2012 MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship.

They will pilot a pair of Aprilia RSV4 machines for the new-look team as it makes its BSB debut this season.

Laverty (29), returns to the Superbike class just nine months after a career-threatening crash at Oulton Park left him with multiple injuries. The 2008 British Superbike Cup champion broke numerous bones including knee, ankles, both shoulders and his pelvis in the crash and has spent several months on a tough recovery programme to get him back on his feet and ready to race again.

He said: “Once I knew I had a ride in place it gave me a little bit more of a target to work towards. The recovery has been going well.

“I imagine it will be a slow start to the season for me, but I will become stronger as it goes on and by the end of it we should be firing on all cylinders.”

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