Tyco Suzuki team principal Philip Neill is taking Josh Brookes impending road racing debut at the North West 200 extremely seriously.
However, Neill is at pains to point out that the Australian star's unquestionable priority in a year when he will also come under intense media scrutiny as he makes his Isle of Man TT bow is to win the Northern Ireland team's maiden British Superbike crown.
Neill also stressed that there will be 'no pressure' on the 29-year-old at either event, where he is joined in the Tyco Suzuki line-up by Guy Martin.
“Obviously it has taken a while to sort out all the details, but this now completes Josh's racing campaign for 2013, which will be quite a busy programme,” said Neill.
“Winning the British Superbike title remains our number one goal as a team, but the North West 200 is also a very important event for Tyco Suzuki and all our associated sponsors, as we have had a lot of success there over the years.
“Like any newcomer to the North West, there is no pressure on Josh, other than to enjoy the experience,” added Neill, whose TAS Racing team has racked up almost 20 victories at the North West 200 – an event he rates as his favourite race meeting of the year.
“Once he has completed his road racing campaign at the North West and TT, only then can we evaluate his future on the roads.
“But granted it is an exciting prospect for the organisers and the fans to have one of the leading BSB riders on the grid, and with both he and Guy camped under our awning, I expect it to be a very busy event for all at Tyco Suzuki.”