James Ellison says he is delighted to be returning to Shaun Muir Racing in 2010 as he looks to go one better this season and win the MCE British Superbike Championship title.
Ellison competed with SMR, formerly known as Hydrex Honda, in 2008, the former MotoGP impressing enough with the privateer team to be snapped up by multiple champions GSE Racing for the 2009 season.
Going on to win four races with the title-winning team, Ellison finished as runner-up to Leon Camier but would find himself sat uneasy on the sidelines when GSE Racing confirmed it would not be competing in 2010.
Nonetheless, while SMR had originally intended to run just Stuart Easton this season, a prominent sponsorship deal with Swan enabled them to accommodate Ellison once again, much to his relief.
“I am very pleased to be back,” he told Crash.net
. “It was a pity how things went down at the end of the year given I had a two-year contract, but that's racing. I don't think Shaun was even going to run two riders originally, so he didn't have anything else in place.
“When I spoke to him, he was excited and said he wanted to do it, but that he hadn't budgeted for two riders. From November to January, we were on the phone back and forth sorting everything out. Finally, with the help of MSVR and their contacts something came together.”
With SMR making a breakthrough in form over the 2009 season, Easton winning races at Croft and Oulton Park, Ellison says he it is clear the team has made a massive step forward since he left.
“Everything is an improvement! The electronics on the bike are the same but a better version, the swing-arm is an improved version… They have chipped away every year to get better and better, and now I think they are the strongest team out there at the moment. It is nice to come back to a familiar team and have all of these improvements.”