Ryan Farquhar's KMR Kawasaki team set to miss Isle of Man TT over rule changes
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Ryan Farquhar's KMR Kawasaki team set to miss Isle of Man TT over rule changes
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Ryan Farquhar and his wife Karen celebrate Peter Hickman's third place on the KMR Kawasaki in the Lightweight TT in 2017.

Ryan Farquhar's KMR Kawasaki team set to miss Isle of Man TT over rule changes

Ryan Farquhar’s KMR Kawasaki machines have been a mainstay of Supertwin racing at the Isle of Man TT since 2012, but the hugely successful Ulster team looks set to miss the legendary Manx event this summer.

Farquhar – Ireland’s most successful ever Irish national road racer – says new regulations introduced for the renamed Supertwin TT in 2022 have forced him to have a rethink over his plans.

The 46-year-old won the inaugural Lightweight TT for Supertwin machines in 2012 and has been a driving force behind the growth of the 650cc class, which has filled the void left by the demise of 125cc and 250cc two-stroke racing.

Farquhar also clinched countless Supertwin victories on the Irish road racing scene and also triumphed on the international stage at the North West 200 and Ulster Grand Prix.

Along with the North West 200, the TT has been the primary objective for his team in recent years, but the Co Tyrone man says he intends to give motorcycle road racing’s premier meeting a miss in 2022.

The new regulations for the Supertwin class permit twin cylinder machines up to 700cc to compete, opening the door for Yamaha’s all-new YZF-R7 and Aprilia’s RS660 to race against Kawasaki’s long-established 650.

However, this poses a problem for Farquhar, who intends to run his machines at 700cc on the roads.

He explained:

“I’ve always said that there’s no substitute for extra power, but the issue that I have is that if I’m going to do the likes of the North West and some national road races, we’re going to squeeze the most out of the bikes and change them to 700cc.

“The rules allow us to do that everywhere on the roads except at the TT, where the Kawasaki has to stay at 650cc.

“It would mean I’d have to change the bikes back to 650cc just for the TT and personally I can’t afford to do that, and also be at the TT for three weeks.

“I used to go with five Supertwins and put five riders out at the TT, but that’s where we are at the moment. I’m not saying I’ll never be back at the TT, but I won’t be going in 2022,” Farquhar added.

“The show will go on but we’re a very small team and we’ve always tried to do the TT on a shoestring, so to bring everything over there for three weeks, and the stress and pressure that’s involved, it’s doesn’t appeal to me at the minute.”

Over the past 10 years, Farquhar has also fielded many of the sport’s big names on his KMR Kawasaki machines, including Jamie Hamilton, Jeremy McWilliams, Danny Webb, Michael Rutter, Peter Hickman, Lee Johnston, Gary Johnson, Josh Brookes, David Johnson and Derek McGee.

He has yet to finalise his line-up for the year ahead, but Farquhar’s KMR Kawasaki team will be in action at the Irish national road races and the North West 200 as the sport returns to a normal calendar after two seasons blighted by the coronavirus pandemic.

Last year, Co Westmeath’s McGee won the Supertwin race at Armoy on a KMR Kawasaki and smashed Farquhar’s lap record for the class with an impressive display.

The Co Antrim race meeting was one only two Irish road races that went ahead, along with the Cookstown 100 last September.

Farquhar said:

“I’d done a bit of development work before Armoy last year when Derek McGee rode the bike and got a win. He also broke my lap record from 2015, but I haven’t really done anything since then to be honest.

“I’m waiting on a few new parts coming, so we will be doing a bit of work to the bikes.

“I’ve spoken to one or two riders but we’ve nothing ready to announce just yet.”

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Kyle White

09-02-2022, 08:03 PM
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