TV & sports personality Guy Martin suffered a setback to his sensational comeback to motorcycle racing on Saturday when he spectacularly crashed out of the Tandragee 100. Both he and his fellow rider, Paul Jordan, were lucky enough to escape uninjured after colliding during the race’s first lap, however it wasn’t the outcome that Martin was hoping for in his bid to win a TT licence and compete in this year’s race on the Isle of Man.
Martin’s Surprise Return
After taking a year out in 2016 to concentrate on mountain biking, Martin took the motorbike fraternity by surprise earlier this year when he signed up to the Honda squad for 2017’s prestigious event.
Having previously expressed his doubts over whether he had a future in motorcycle racing after being injured at Dunrod in 2015, the Lincolnshire TV presenter appears to have had a change of heart and is now on a mission to compete in six races to get his mountain course licence before the end of May.
The CBR1000RR Fireblade SP2
Martin is making his return to competitive riding on the CBR1000RR Fireblade SP2, Honda’s latest cutting edge machine. Its predecessor was the most successful 1000cc bike ever to compete in the TT, so there are high expectations for the Honda team in this year’s event with this new model which is touted to be the ultimate expression of the “Next Stage Total Control” concept.
This road legal bike is based on the racing-specific Fireblade SP but with enhancements such as larger valve sizes, lightweight Marchesini wheels and a revised cylinder head, all of which have been designed to boost its performance.
The team’s hopes may be raised even higher by the fact that Martin has been open about his change of approach, saying that he is going to treat his return as a job instead of a hobby in an attempt to secure the TT win that has so far eluded him in his career, despite having stepped onto the podium no less than 15 times.
Returning to the Circuit
While the motorcycling community are excited about Martin’s return to the circuit, the 35 year-old presenter and mechanic himself says that he never really went away, having done a bit of dirt track racing over the last year while he focused on the gruelling Tour Divide mountain bike event. However, whether or not the racer himself sees his return as a significant move, it has certainly attracted plenty of attention from the media and from motorcycling enthusiasts alike.
Where is Martin Racing Next?
Despite his setback on Saturday, Martin is still geared up to compete in the Cookstown 100 on the 28th and 29th April, as well as in the North West 200 at the beginning of May in his attempt to get up to speed for the TT. With his eyes on the prize and a new-found determination, the sporting world waits with bated breath for news of his success.