It has been a month Burrows will never forget
Dungannon road racer John Burrows certainly won’t forget February in a hurry.
His wife Rachel gave birth to their first child Jack just last week, which also coincided with the news that John would be riding a Superstock machine for Mar-Train Racing at this year’s Isle of Man TT.
Burrows is one of national road racing’s most experienced performers, and while the County Tyrone engineer doesn’t always command the same column inches as some riders, his professional approach and mature attitude was a big attraction for Temple businessman Tim Martin.
Martin said: “I’m not sure if we are going to go for a full-on attack at the TT in 2011 — I could probably answer that question in June.
“For now we want to learn all about the place, and going with John, we feel, is the correct choice.
“Previously we couldn’t quite make the TT add up, but John is not only an experienced racer but a straight talker and a nice guy.
“We have been talking to him since the Sunflower last year and now it all seems to have come together.”
Martin and his ISB team’s crew chief Paul Truesdale will spend practice week and Superstock race day with John’s team on the island learning the ropes, and he’s putting no pressure on the big man for results.
Mar-Train’s Irish Superbike Championship Suzuki will need to be heavily modified to bring it back into line with FIM Superstock rules for the TT Races.
This will mean Coleraine rider James Dickson — their ISB rider of choice for this season — will have to campaign the team’s spare machine at ISB rounds either side of the TT.
The Mar-Train machine will increase Burrows’ stable of bikes to five this year, although only his Superbike and Supersport machines will travel to Mona’s Isle alongside Mar-Train’s K9 GSX–R1000 Suzuki.
“I’m looking forward to the TT with Mar-Train,” explained Burrows.
“It’s not a ‘Cameron Donald job’ where I’m expected to go out and win. There will be no pressure on me and a top 15 is my target.
“I’m very appreciative of the offer from Tim and, who knows, I may even end up riding the bike at the North West 200 as well for extra set-up time.”
The Mar-Train team is currently in negotiations with a top local rider about riding their Supersport machine at the NW200 in May.
It’s rumoured to be Fermanagh rider Lee Johnston, who would be familiar with their ex-Raceways Yamaha, having campaigned a similar machine for the English team in last year’s British Championship.