Honda UK will make a full-time return to the MCE British Superbike Championship in 2015 after signing Dan Linfoot and promoting Jason O'Halloran to lead its comeback campaign.

The loss of its title sponsor and a drought of potential title-winning riders prompted Honda to reduce its BSB involvement to a handful of wild-card outings in 2014, this despite clinching the 2013 riders' title with Alex Lowes.

Nonetheless, having maintained a strict development programme during its sabbatical year, Honda has fulfilled its vow to return in 2015 with Australian rider O'Halloran being promoted to a Superbike ride and Linfoot joining the ranks.

Linfoot's move to Honda comes after his breakout campaign in 2014 aboard the privateer Quattro Plant Kawasaki, the 26-year-old finishing every race en route to the Title Showdown and fifth overall. With this in mind, Linfoot is aiming high in 2015 with factory support behind him now.

"I am really excited about joining Honda because it is a team that I have looked up to since I started racing and they have had a lot of success in the Championship," he said. "The Honda team have celebrated multiple titles and won with Alex (Lowes) in 2013 before they began further development work, so that shows how strong they are as a team. It is a great feeling to have signed for them as they have seen potential in me and I think that both on and off the track we can unlock that and keep progressing.

"In 2014 my goal was always to make the Showdown and be consistent and now I need to step that up again and set my sights even higher - to start winning races and be fighting for the podium at every round. I see this as a big opportunity and I need to grab that with both hands and do the best possible job I can in 2015."

O'Halloran, meanwhile, gets his BSB break with Honda having competed with the manufacturer in the Supersport and Superstock 1000 classes, most recently finishing runner-up to Danny Buchan in the latter series this year.

"It feels really good to be moving into the Superbike Championship as that has been my aim since joining Honda in 2011," he said. "I have never started a season before with so much experience of the bike already; we have been developing the Honda at tests during this season, which means I have essentially already got knowledge of the bike from testing. I am really confident in the package and throughout the various tests we have had this year it has only got stronger and as a team we have made progress.

"I think I can make the transition from the start and there is no reason why we can't have strong, consistent results from the beginning of the year. It is a hard class but if I can step up another level then there is no reason why we shouldn't be targeting podiums during the season. My target is to be challenging at the front this year and everything is in place with the team to make that happen."



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