Honda have today announced the lineup for their 2013 British championship effort under the Samsung Honda banner.
The team sees the shock return to BSB of Japanese star and three-time champion Ryuichi Kiyonari, back in BSB after a year in the Asian championship.
He will be joined by Alex Lowes, who impressed with a storming double win in the shootout round of 2012 to secure fourth in the championship.
Australian rider Jason O'Halloran will stay with the team, moving from Superstock to Supersport as Honda once again field a factory 600 bike.
Kiyonari said: “I am so happy to be returning to this team and to this championship. I have had great success in this series and am keen to repeat this once again.
I really love the British fans and feel at home here. They love their racing in the UK and really get behind the riders. I have been away for a year and have had time to think about a lot of things.
I kept coming back to the idea that I wanted to race in the UK again and am really fired up for the challenge and about the prospect of a fourth championship title!”
Lowes added “I am absolutely delighted to be joining the official Honda team for the 2013 season. They are well established and the most successful team in the BSB paddock. I really do believe that in this team I will have the package to help me further develop as a rider and to fight for podiums, race wins and also for the championship.
I know the Fireblade well, having ridden it in BSB this season and also in World Superbikes in 2011 and I feel like it is my bike. It’s my time to shine and can’t wait to get started.”
Team Manager Havier Beltran commented “We are very happy to announce what we think is a supremely strong rider line-up in both Superbike and Supersport. With Kiyo returning we know we have a rider who is a proven winner and we hope to get the best out of him once again.
Alex Lowes is a young, exciting rider on so many levels and has the potential to become one of the greats. With Jason, you know what you get, hard-work, dedication and above all speed. He is the ideal rider to spearhead the Supersport programme, a championship we last competed in, and won in 2009, and want to win again!
We have a hunger for more silverware and are confident we have the right people in place in the team to make this happen.”