BSB: Hawk Racing's Suzuki partnership comes to an end

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Hawk Racing has confirmed that its partnerships with Suzuki and Buildbase have come to an end ahead of the 2023 Bennetts British Superbike Championship season.

The team has raced Suzuki GSX-R1000Rs in BSB since 2017 but will now move forward with a different manufacturer. This follows Suzuki’s withdrawal from MotoGP and, as an official entry, the Endurance World Championship.

On the road, Suzuki GB’s Director of Motorcycles, Paul de Lusignan confirmed to MCN in November that the GSX-R1000 will also be discontinued in Europe as it does not meet Euro5 emissions regulations.

“Our decision to explore alternative options to Suzuki follows the manufacturer’s recent announcements about its racing activities globally, and the absence of news about the possibility of a new GSXR 1000,” Hawk Racing’s statement said.

“It draws an end to a partnership between Hawk and Suzuki that we will remember for some fantastic achievements, including Sylvain Guintoli’s win at Assen, Bradley Ray’s first British Superbike Championship podium at Oulton Park, Michael Dunlop’s historic Isle of Man Senior TT win, double British Superbike Championship race wins for Bradley Ray, Kyle Ryde and Gino Rea, and Richard Cooper’s victorious National Superstock Championship campaign.

Bradley Ray wins for Buildbase Suzuki at Donington Park in 2018

“We would like to extend our thanks to everyone at Suzuki GB and SMC, with special mentions to Paul de Lusigan, Tim Davies, Takashi Fujita, Shinichi Sahara, Katsuhiro Naito, Kentaroh Ohnishi, Ian Bland and Rob Cooper.

Meanwhile, the team’s title sponsorship deal with Buildbase ends after 14 seasons.

“Since joining forces with Buildbase in 2009, our partnership with them became one of the longest running on the domestic racing scene. While we are naturally disappointed that the 2022 season was our last together, we are extremely grateful for all of the support Buildbase has given to the team over the years and would like to wish them every success in their future business under their new owners, Huws Gray.”

Charlie Nesbitt and Josh Owens will represent the team in 2023 following the departures of Christian Iddon and Danny Kent. Nesbitt raced for the team in the Superstock class last season, whilst Owens switches from Rapid CDH Racing Kawasaki.

Both riders are former British GP2 Champions, whilst Owens also won the 2015 British 125cc title. Nesbitt clinched the 2016 British Moto3 crown.

Hawk Racing will unveil its new manufacturer and sponsorship details in the February 15 issue of MCN. Inside, you’ll also find exclusive comments from team boss Steve Hicken.