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Honda Racing UK expands to four riders for 2022 Bennetts BSB

Wednesday, November 17 2021

Honda Racing UK has confirmed its plans for the 2022 Bennetts British Superbike Championship season, with Tom Neave joining the premier class alongside Glenn Irwin, Ryo Mizuno and Takumi Takahashi. This means the Louth-based squad expands to a four-rider assault for next season.

Irwin continues with the team for a third consecutive year. The Northern Irishman is aiming to bounce back in 2022 following recent shoulder surgery for an injury which plagued him throughout this year. He's determined to be in the title fight from the start after showing his potential with wins and podiums aboard the Fireblade SP throughout 2020 and 2021.

For the Japanese contenders Mizuno and Takahashi, 2022 will be a sophomore season following their British series debuts this year. For both riders, 2021 offered a first taste of UK circuits and tyres, and they'll be hoping to build upon that experience moving forwards.

Reigning Pirelli National Superstock champion Neave remains with the team, stepping up to the top class after his title-winnning season. Neave joins Bennetts BSB full-time after previously contesting two rounds with Honda in 2018.

Irwin said: "I'm delighted to sign again with Honda Racing UK for the third consecutive season; I think we've had two years of a good foundation and an excellent debut with the Fireblade SP, and despite lots of little challenges we have learnt a lot about the bike. I expect good things and especially with the development from this season, what I want and what the team want is to step up and to fight more with the top runners on a consistent basis.

"Having Ryo and Takumi staying with the team is good and I enjoyed working with them this season and the input they had, at times they were starting to show more pace which will only help the team moving forward. Tom stepping up is fantastic and a teammate I've been wanting, he's young, he's hungry, very dedicated and will certainly keep me on my toes! It does no harm to have a teammate like that.

"I think 2022 can be a good season, I've been under the knife recently for my shoulder getting that fixed and I am looking forward to going into a new season clear of injury and I am looking forward to going testing."

Mizuno said: "I'm glad to continue racing with the Honda Racing UK team in 2022. I'll be aiming to keep on fighting and evolving with the CBR1000RR-R Fireblade SP each race to aim for better and better results. I'd like to thank my family, friends, and personal sponsors for supporting my racing activities."

Takahashi said: "I'll participate the British Superbike Championship in 2022. In 2021, most of the circuits were new for me and because of my injury, I was frustrated by the results. I've already started preparations for 2022 season to get a good result. My first target is the podium, but I'll do my best for the victory."

Neave said: "I'm not sure I can sum this up into a short one really but racing in the Superbike series is what I have worked towards since I started on tarmac, but certainly since I have been with Honda the aim was always to get into Superbike. I've served my apprenticeship finishing as runner-up in 2020 and this year becoming the Superstock champion, and now it's time to graduate up to the next level, where the real work starts!

"I have never been so motivated to make it happen and can't wait to figure it all out and just get testing on the Superbike now, it's finally become a reality and I couldn't be happier. Thank you to Honda Racing UK, Harv, Neil and everyone who has stood by, believed and worked with me to make this happen - 2022 I can't wait!"