BSB: Leon Haslam returns with Lee Hardy Racing

Leon Haslam is back in the British Superbike Championship
Leon Haslam is back in the British Superbike Championship

Leon Haslam will return to the Bennetts British Superbike Championship this season after signing a deal with Lee Hardy Racing.

Haslam returns to the UK after three years in the World Superbike Championship, spending a sole season alongside Jonathan Rea at Kawasaki in 2019 before moving to the new Team HRC team to develop the new Honda Fireblade alongside Alvaro Bautista.

OUT NOW: You’ll find an exclusive interview with Leon Haslam in this week’s issue of MCN

Like he did when he won the BSB title in 2018, Haslam will once again ride for Kawasaki, onboard the current Ninja ZX-10RR. Back in 2018, Haslam dominated the series by taking 15 wins and six further podiums, ending his campaign 70 points clear of nearest rival, Jake Dixon.

“I’m super excited to be back in the British Championship and also to be back with Kawasaki, especially with the link to my Kawasaki-backed Affinity Sports Academy team,” Haslam said. “It’s been a tough few years racing abroad so it’s going to be great back in front of my home crowd once again!

“I know it’s going to be a tough year against these guys but I’m looking forward to the challenge and have a lot of faith in the team around me.”

Haslam will be the sole rider at Lee Hardy Racing, which is ironically the team that took the fight to him with Dixon during the 2018 season. Haslam takes the spot of Ryan Vickers, who has joined FHO Racing BMW for 2022.

“I am very excited to have signed an agreement with Leon to contest the 2022 British Superbike Championship,” Team Principal, Lee Hardy said. “Leon has proved what an asset he can be to a team, and we look forward to building a strong partnership together.

“We have both had amazing success with the Kawasaki brand, Leon last won the championship in 2018 with them and in that same year the Lee Hardy Racing team finished second to him also on Ninja machinery. We both have forged a great alliance with Kawasaki, and I see this as an incredible opportunity to fight for the championship again.”

The team’s new title sponsor, following the departure of the Royal Air Force, and 2022 livery will be revealed in the coming weeks.

The first official BSB test takes place at Snetterton on March 26-27, and will be followed by a one-day test at Donington on March 31. Silverstone then holds a two-day test on April 6-7, with the new season kicking off at Silverstone on April 15-17.

OUT NOW: Leon Haslam talks exclusively to MCN about his return to BSB