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Mar 30, 2014

Tyco Suzuki's William Dunlop Completes Third Pre-Season Test, At Kirkistown

William Dunlop (6).

Tyco Suzuki’s new road racing recruit William Dunlop has never been one to court the limelight, preferring the more subtle approach, and that’s exactly the route he has taken with new employers TAS Racing.

Team manager Philip Neill has taken the Ballymoney man into unfamiliar territory so far this season, with William enjoying two very productive testing trips to Spain: these included three days at Almeria with Guy Martin, and was followed up by two days at Cartagena alongside new team-mates John Hopkins, Josh Waters and Taylor Mackenzie.

And just this week, team manager Philip Neill showed his commitment to the cause by flying in Stewart Johnstone, the team’s technical expert and BSB crew chief to new BSB star John Hopkins – for a one-on-one day with Dunlop at Kirkistown, as he explained.

“I think William surprised himself at Kirkistown under the guidance of Stewart Johnstone. They put in a lot of work in different areas and he said himself, he’s really enjoying both our Superbike and Supersport machines.”

Johnstone has worked with some of the best in the business and some experienced onlookers who were at Kirkistown on Tuesday, were also very impressed with how Dunlop has adapted to Suzuki machinery and the way of life at TAS Racing.

Dunlop’s schedule of races has yet to be decided. The only thing that Neill would confirm were the three internationals and Cookstown, but the Ballymoney based rider is expected to take in a number of National Road Races and possibly even a run out at Easter in Ireland.

Neill added: “I’m almost certain, everything William has picked up this week working with Stuart to perfect his riding style on a Superbike, will help him make huge strides forward this season with our GS-R machinery.”

Despite having taken high-profile Aussie Josh Brookes to the TT last year, collecting the top newcomer’s prize with an astonishing lap of over 127mph, Neill is equally excited to have Dunlop in his rank and file this term.

“It’s an exciting development for us. Of course we have excitement in abundance with Guy Martin, but William does add an important local angle to our team, which I feel we have been missing for quite some time at the TT.”

Showing respect to Brookes, he added: “Yes last year working with Josh Brookes was exciting, bringing such a high-profile newcomer to the TT, but I’ve always wanted to be back to working with a local rider and to have William Dunlop partner with Guy Martin is undoubtedly the ideal scenario.”