The future of the OTSS Racing team and road racer Mark Buckley hang in the balance as funding for the team's efforts runs out.
Buckley has admitted his racing year could be over after he poured all his efforts into the 2010 TT and came away without the haul of top 10 finishes he wanted – and needed.
“We are all trying to be positive, but the truth is I don't know if I can race again this year as funding has ended and we also have no Supersport machine for the near future.”
“I really hope I showed throughout (TT) practice week that I have the speed and I just need the right break!”
His aim heading into the two-week festival was to have everything in place for good finishes in every class he contested. However, he was dealt an early blow in March when his main sponsor pulled out.
Buckley was determined to carry on and funded his TT efforts himself, with support from family and friends as well as the continued backing of some loyal sponsors.
Despite already dealing with the turmoil of a major funding issue, Buckley also took the momentous decision to switch manufacturer to Kawasaki for 2010. His preparations, and support from Nick Morgan, MSS and Paul Bird Motorsport, put him in great shape for the TT.
However, the lack of funds saw him miss pre-season testing, getting his first proper ride on the machinery during races. Despite the lack of testing, Buckley secured some top five finishes at Oulton Park, Scarborough and Knockhill and by the time the OTSS Racing outfit arrived in the Isle of Man, the team and all of the Kawasaki machinery were prepped for the task ahead.
The TT got off to a perfect start when Buckley was consistently inside the top 10 on the OTSS Racing Kawasaki Supersport machine, and only just outside the top 10 runners on the ZX10 Superbike. With a fastest average lap of just under 125mph, the Scotsman was happy with progress and confident he could do this lap after lap in both the Superbike and Senior races.
The MSS-tuned Supersport machine was also producing great times and had seen numerous 120mph+ laps. By the end of practice week both team and rider were happy and set for the race week.