HM Plant Honda confirm Glen Richards and Josh Brookes

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HM Plant Honda has announced the signatures of both Glen Richards and Josh Brookes to ride in the factory Honda team for 2009 in BSB.

Both emerged as favourites to sign in the last two weeks after the departures of both Cal Crutchlow and Leon Haslam to the World Championship.

Richards will bring with him a wealth of experience after a British Supersport crown in 2008 and a Superstock 1000 title the year prior.

He said: “I’m looking forward to the opportunity and want to give it 110%.

“I’m well up for this challenge and I intend to give it my all!

“I’ve won two championships in a row with Superstock and now Supersport, so to make it three-in-a-row is the aim and to add a Superbike title would be awesome.

“I’ve never had a ‘factory’ ride as such in the BSB series, so I do feel I have unfinished business in the championship and something to prove.

“Modern Superbikes are smaller now, much like the 600-class machines I’ve been riding.

“I’ve also been used to big power before, I know the tracks and I’m used to the control tyre, so I’m looking forward to 2009!”

Richard’s will gain Brookes as a team-mate for 2009 – a rider with a strong background with Honda after campaigns in both World Superbike and World Supersport with the Japanese manufacture.

And Brookes said it was the draw of working with a professional outfit that attracted him to the ride.

“I’ve joined HM Plant Honda as I wanted to find a team which is a happy place to work and one with a good family, but also professional, atmosphere,” said Brookes.

“When I did the one-off ride at Brands, it showed me how well the team worked together and although I was only with them for a few days, it felt like I’d been with them all season.

“That was important.

“They’ve got a straight-forward and effective way of working and I like that.

“The HM Plant Honda CBR1000RR Fireblades have shown this season they can challenge for the title, so I think I can get the bike working well regardless of having not been to most of the tracks.

“The tracks themselves are quite similar to some of the ones I raced on in Australia, the only difference is the weather, but I’m good in the wet so that’s no bother either!”

Steve Plater will head the team’s Supersport campaign after doing a deal to represent HM Plant on the roads, while Steve Brogan will be back to defend his Superstock title with Honda UK in ’09.

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Rob Hull

By Rob Hull