John McGuinness experienced a hectic past two years at the Isle of Man TT.
The 47-year-old missed the 2017 season following his horrific crash that year at the North West 200. During the wreck, he broke vertebrae, ribs, and sustained multiple fractions in his lower right leg.
The “Morecambe Missile” was set to return in 2018 on a Norton SG7, but he had yet to fully recover and was sidelined once again.
McGuinness did return to the 37.73-mile circuit with Norton for 2019. Compared to his career, the season was extremely disappointing. He DNF’d during the Superbike race after an engine bolt broke on his SG7.
But for 2020, McGuinness will be back on Japanese machinery in the liter classes – though not on his usual Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade.
The 23-time TT winner – three shy of the record of wins held by the late Joey Dunlop – will compete with Pete Extance’s British Superbike Championship-winning Quattro Plant Bournemouth Kawasaki team.
For the 2020 IOM TT, McGuinness, who has 47 podiums at the IOM TT, will pilot Ninja ZX-10RR machinery in the RST Superbike, RL360 Superstock and Senior TT Races.
“I’m delighted to be riding for Quattro Plant Bournemouth Kawasaki at the 2020 Isle of Man TT and their record on the island with James Hillier, in terms of both results and reliability, speaks for itself,” John McGuinness says.
“With it being such a family-orientated team, it’s the perfect fit for me and they’re a highly reputable, professional team who have achieved great things on both the roads and the circuits.”
“Pete drove all the way up from Bournemouth to Morecambe to meet me and put the offer on the table and it didn’t take much for me to sign – it was an easy decision. Everything made perfect sense and we’ve put together a good plan that will put us in the best position possible. Joining Kawasaki and Pete’s team and riding the Ninja ZX-10RR at the TT is a new chapter for me, one I’m excited about and really looking forward to.”
Pete Extance, Team Owner, Bournemouth Kawasaki, said “It’s absolutely incredible news that we can welcome Isle of Man TT legend John McGuinness onto our Quattro Plant Bournemouth Kawasaki machinery. To me, John is Mr TT and what an honour it is to have our Bournemouth Kawasaki dealership associated with him.”
“We both know there’s a big job ahead of us to be ready for the new season but it’s one that we know will be great fun. Hopefully, we can put John McGuinness back on the podium at the Isle of Man TT, the place where we know he belongs.”
McGuinness is undeniably a favorite for 2020. He held the outright lap record at the TT Mountain Course from 2004-2013, regaining the accolade in 2015 when he lapped at a personal best speed of 132.701 mph.
The current outright lap record was set by Peter Hickman (BMW S 1000 RR) during the 2018 Isle of Man TT – a 135.452 mph.
McGuinness’s last podium appearances in the Superbike classes came in 2016 when he took third in both the Superbike and Senior TT Races.
The 2020 Isle of Man TT is set for Saturday, May 30, through Friday, June 12.