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Gearlink Kawasaki may focus solely on Seeley
18 December 2012
British Supersport team owner Michael de Bidaph is willing to focus his efforts solely on Northern Ireland's Alastair Seeley at next year's North West 200.
Seeley, who racked up a hat-trick of victories at the event this year to take his tally of wins to eight, has joined De Bidaph's respected Gearlink Kawasaki outfit for the British Supersport Championship in 2013 alongside old rival Ben Wilson.
The North West 200 is the only road race Seeley currently competes in and De Bidaph believes he has a golden opportunity to earn his maiden wins at the event next May with Seeley at the helm of the ZX6.
“We're determined to put a package together that Alastair can win on at the North West and we're coming over to win those Supersport races - that's what we want,” De Bidaph said.
“I want to give him everything we can to try and win and sometimes you can take on more than what you should and then you don't do quite as well.
“At this moment in time I don't plan on running anyone else but in my eyes nothing is ever written in stone and we'll see how things pan out next year.”
De Bidaph also ruled out the possibility that Wilson would make his road racing debut at the event after being taken around the circuit earlier the year by former top racer and NW200 favourite Steve Plater.
“Ben's been over this year for a look around the circuit at the North West because we were there as a team and Steve Plater took him around the track, but I'm not sure the event is for Ben,” De Bidaph told the Belfast News Letter.
“I must say though that Ben quite liked the look of the circuit but I'm not sure he's ready to do the North West at this moment in time.
“I've already had another rider expressing an interest in riding one of my bikes at the North West who'd be quite competitive, but it would be a lot of work to try and put another bike together that would be running at the front and I don't want to take anything away from Alastair.”
De Bidaph's Gearlink Kawasaki team competed at the North West 200 for the first time this year, when tragedy struck after Scottish competitor Mark Buckley died in an accident in the Superstock race.
Mr Buckley had been brought into the Gearlink Kawasaki team to ride in the Supersport class.
“Obviously this year Mark Buckley was riding our Supersport bike at the North West and that made it worse because I got to know Mark a little bit before the event,” said De Bidaph.
“He was an absolutely lovely guy but racing is racing and it can happen on the short circuits as well, because we were very unfortunate to lose a rider on the short circuits with Ben [Gautrey].
“But it hasn't put us off coming back and I was really impressed with what I saw.
“I had no idea what the North West 200 was like before I came this year and it was far more professional than I thought it would be,” he said.
“I thought the organisation was really good and the circuit is really exciting - I'd endorse the event to anyone.”
Ex-British Supersport champion Seeley will also ride Kawasaki machinery in the Superbike and Superstock classes at the North West 200 for Nick Morgan's MSS Kawasaki outfit.
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