Glenn Irwin will return to the North West 200 in 2018 with the PBM Be Wiser Ducati team.

Irwin won the feature Superbike race at the event in May on his debut in the class on the roads.

The 27-year-old from Carrickfergus in Northern Ireland, who secured his maiden British Superbike victory at Silverstone earlier this month, said he was already relishing his return to the international road race, which takes place on Saturday, May 19.

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Irwin claimed a famous win after beating fellow Ulsterman Alastair Seeley on a gripping final lap.

“I am really looking forward to coming back to the North West again. I’ve had a good season with the PBM Ducati team, winning the North West and getting my first BSB win despite getting injured at Knockhill,” he said.

“That last lap was like a football match with the whole crowd getting involved. It has a special buzz for me because it is where I watched racing when I was a kid. After last year I sort of feel that I am now the person that I used to watch and that is really cool.

“I am as hungry as ever to win at the North West and I know how much the team want to win again too. I thrive on support and I know how much I get from the fans at home.

“I grew up in Northern Ireland and for us winning the North West is like winning a world championship.”

NW200 Event Director Mervyn Whyte said he was delighted that Irwin and the PBM Ducati team would return to Portrush next Spring.

“Paul Bird is a good friend of the North West 200 and it is great news that he will be bringing Glenn and the PBM Be Wiser Ducati back to Portrush in 2018,” said Whyte.

“Glenn put in an amazing performance against the rest of the world’s finest road racers this year that really captured the imagination of local race fans.

“Now they will have another fantastic opportunity to watch him in action next May and see if he can repeat that incredible feat.”

Irwin is also set to return to the Macau Grand Prix in November on the Ducati Panigale, where he made his debut in 2016.