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Laverty, O'Halloran and Kiyonari to compete in Endurance round

'I'm really looking forward to the experience, especially racing alongside Kiyo who has had so much success at Suzuka' - Michael Laverty
Samsung Honda riders Michael Laverty and Jason O'Halloran plus former British Superbike champion Ryuichi Kiyonari will compete in the second round of the Endurance World Championship for the Honda TT Legends team.

The trio will stand in for regular Legends riders John McGuinness, Simon Andrews and Gary Johnson, who will fly the flag for Honda at the Isle of Man TT races, which clash with the 8-hours of Doha event in Qatar.

Kiyonari is a proven endurance rider having won the legendary Suzuka 8-hour race in Japan four times.

The Japanese rider – who is currently competing in the Asia Road Racing Championship with the Musashi Boon Siew Honda Racing Malaysia team – is a triple BSB champion who left the series at the end of last season.

Northern Ireland rider Michael Laverty is one half of the Samsung Honda BSB line-up, while O'Halloran contests the Metzeler National Superstock class.

Laverty has yet to cut his teeth in endurance racing, but O'Halloran has previously raced in the Suzuka 8-hour event.

Laverty said: “I'm really looking forward to the experience, especially racing alongside Kiyo who has had so much success at Suzuka.

“I've never done an endurance race before and I've never been to Qatar but racing in the desert should be good fun. I don't have any expectations on the result, but it would be nice to put in a good performance under the Honda TT Legends banner while the boys are at the TT.”

O'Halloran added: “I did the Suzuka 8-hour in 2008 and really enjoyed the experience. Endurance racing is not something I've focused on in my career, but it's great to get this opportunity with Honda and fill in for the regular guys while they're on TT duty.”

The Endurance World Championship round clashes with the Senior TT on the Isle of Man on Friday, June 8, regarded as the blue riband race of the iconic road racing festival.

McGuinness, 17-times a TT winner, and Andrews will ride in the official Honda TT Legends colours at the event, with Johnson and Australian rider Cameron Donald competing for Padgetts Racing and Wilson Craig Honda respectively on the Mountain Course.




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whats the point - Unregistered

May 01, 2012 3:06 PM

lol this whole TT legends thing seems a bit half ****d to me. Whats the point in making a b-team when the main riders are off to the TT? why bother even racing with Mcguiness and co? why not just make a new team at the start of the year, drop the tt legends name and actually go out there and try to win rather than lounging around 5th or 6th place. I just have this gut feeling that this team wont beat the super experienced SERT or YART or Kawasaki teams. But good luck to them, we'll see how it goes i guess...

whats the point - Unregistered

May 01, 2012 5:49 PM

@kiyo fan i thought you would have some grey matter between your ears to figure out what i was writing but i guess not, so ill explain to you fully: hire experienced endurance racers, eg poach some from other teams if possible, therein DROPPING THE TT legends name that wouldnt apply anymore. mcguiness and co can concentrate on the tts and leave enduro. i mean if one round of the endurance championship clashes with the TT every year are they really that serious about winning this championship? i remember watching a video at the start of the year for this team that seemed like a military recruitment video, and one of the managers (forgot his name) was adamant they will be challenging for podiums...i really fail to see how that will be...plus changing riders/ having inexperienced enduro riders doesnt help. Im a fan of kiyo aswell but remember Suzuka is like his backyard so i would expect him to be lapping the other european teams. hell, even kagiyama was lapping the top enduro teams...t



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