Hartley makes move from Halsall to Tsingtao

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MCE BSB rider Harry Hartley has completed a swap move with Jon Kirkham, moving from the Halsall Kawasaki seat recently filled by Kirkham to take his spot at the Tsingtao Kawasaki squad for the remainder of 2014.

Hartley, the youngest ever BSB racer, joined the Bolton-based Halsall team at the start of the season, but parted with them half way through the last round at Snetterton, citing confidence issues, as Kirkham did the same with the Tsingtao team.

Hartley said: "I am really happy that the team have given me this opportunity and I need to thank everyone who has helped to make this possible. I am pleased that I have been able to stay with Kawasaki; it is a brilliant Superbike and one that I have some experience of and that will help me to move forward and keep progressing. I am looking forward to working with the team and it will be great to learn from them too. At Knockhill we just want to settle in and then we can go from there; this weekend is a new start for me and I have regrouped and ready to start afresh as BSB is where I want to be."

Team owner Dave Tyson concluded: "We want to move on and continue our Superbike project and it is fantastic that we have been given this chance to work with Harry and to add another young rider to our existing team; the oldest of which is only 21! We don't intend to rush Harry; Knockhill will very much be a test for him to ride the bike and build his confidence. We see it as a platform for him to move forward because we are working hard to establish the team and grow again for next season. Harry can work with Danny (Buchan) and the team so that he can progress in MCE BSB, because ultimately as a team we believe in developing young riders as they will be the future of the series."

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Simon Patterson

By Simon Patterson

MotoGP and road racing reporter, photographer, videographer