A whole host of local motorcycling talent took off from Belfast late last night in preparation for this year’s Kings of Wanneroo event in Perth, Western Australia.
COCKPIT KINGS: Relentless Suzuki BSB riders Ian Lowry and Alastair Seeley take the controls on their way to Perth Australia. PRESSEYE
Current British Superstock champion Alastair Seeley joined Relentless Suzuki team-mate Ian Lowry and road racers Ian Lougher, Conor Cummins, Keith Amor and national road racing record breaker Ryan Farquhar for the 22 hour flight.
They will be joined on the Aussie trip by World Superbike rider Jonathan Rea, former Grand Prix rider Jeremy McWilliams and 2008 World Supersport champion Andrew Pitt later this week — with road racing Maverick Guy Martin and BSB regular Simon Andrews also making their way to the Barbagallo Circuit for some short circuit scratching.
While Lowry and his BSB counterparts will be looking to take the 2009 ‘Kings’ title, the travelling road racers will be treating it as an end of season holiday.
Ten times TT winner Ian Lougher, now based in Dromore, County Down, was busy launching his new team for 2010 before setting off for Perth.
The Welshman has jumped ship from Yamaha to the Kawasaki marque for 2010, taking on the official British Superstock effort for the Japanese manufacturers.
Manxman Conor Cummins, an Ulster Grand Prix winner with McAdoo Racing in August and a double TT podium finisher in June will spearhead the effort. Lougher will also be employing two up-and-coming riders for the National 600cc ‘Juniorstock’ championship, while preparing a stable of ‘green machines’ for his 29th season of racing between the hedges.
Lougher said: “I feel very privileged to be taking on the official Kawasaki Superstock effort in 2010; hopefully we can come up trumps from them.
“Having worked with Conor this year on the Yamaha we are looking forward now to 2010 on the Kawasakis. We have learnt a lot this year and Conor has a good perception of what is going on with the bike.
“Our team set up is now pretty solid so hopefully we can give Kawasaki some success next season.”
Lougher also commented on his own switch of machinery for the 2010 road racing season, saying: “This is the first time I’ve ridden Kawasaki machinery since 1991, when I rode the works bike that John Reynolds was using at that stage in BSB. Colin Wright was running the Team Green effort back then.
“I’m really looking forward to a new challenge next year on both fronts as a manager and a rider, and I must add, it’s great to have teamed up with Black Horse Motorcycle finance for our seventh season in racing. The team will be called Team Black Horse Kawasaki.”