Ducati IOMTT 2010
Legendary Italian manufacturer Ducati will be back in force at the 2010 Isle of Man TT races with Michael Rutter and his British Superbike Championship team, Riders Motorcycles.com, announcing that they will be contesting four out of the five solo races.
With further support from Bathams Brewery and Black Horse Finance Rutter will campaign his 1098R Ducati, fully updated to 2010 specification, in both the Superbike and Senior races. As an added bonus he will also race the team’s 749RS in the two Supersport races. The Midlands rider last rode a Ducati at the TT in 1996 and the last official Ducati effort on the Island was in 2003 when John McGuinness rode the 998cc MonsterMob machine.
Rutter’s recent outings at the TT in 2007 and 2009 were blighted by injury and machinery issues. His 2009 TT race series was particularly difficult as he split with his NW200 Yamaha squad on the eve of the event and arrived on the Island still building his own Suzuki. However he still lapped consistently in the 125mph bracket with a best result of seventh in the Pokerstars Senior race. The return to Ducati, with a fully supported effort, should see him back to his best.
Now 37, Rutter has a really strong pedigree around the Mountain Course having taken victory in the 1998 Supersport race and has also recorded eight further podiums. He currently holds the 18th fastest time for a lap of the 37 and 3/4 mile circuit.
Speaking about the deal that will see him back racing at the TT for the tenth time, an excited Michael said:
"I’m really pleased to be returning to the TT with Ducati and I’m really excited and optimistic about our chances. Obviously last year didn’t quite go to plan with all the problems so I’m eager to come back with a fully competitive package and show what we can really do. When we went racing with the Ducati at the end of 2009 it was all a bit last-minute and very rushed but I could see there was a lot of potential with the bikes and I think we will be really competitive next season with updated engines and electronics.
He continued: " I’m looking forward to riding the 1098R around the course and I’m sure we’ll be right in the thick of the action. It’s also great to have the use of the 749 for the two Supersport races. It has proved how competitive it is at British Championship level and I can’t wait to take on the 600cc machines on the V-Twin in the two Supersport races at the TT as well."
Hon Martyn Quayle, MHK, Minister for Tourism and Leisure, Isle of Man Government commented: "We’ve really tried to encourage as many manufacturers as possible to come to the TT so that there is lots of variety for fans on the grid. Ducati is one of the great names in the TT’s history and with Michael Rutter on board as well, it is very exciting to see them coming back to the Isle of Man with such a competitive proposition."