John McGuinness and Guy Martin debuted the 2017 Honda Racing colours they’ll race at this year’s North West 200 and Isle of Man TT at Castle Combe yesterday.
Taking part in what should be their final test before next month’s North West, McGuinness and Martin posed for photos in the striking new livery before heading out on track despite the chilly temperatures.
After taking delivery of the all new Fireblade machines late, it has been an uphill struggle for the Louth-based squad with McGuinness and Martin not testing their full-spec Superbike machines until earlier this month.
However, McGuinness is pleased with progress made and confident the might of the factory Honda team can give him a package to bridge the gap to Michael Dunlop and Ian Hutchinson.
“We’ve been waiting for this bike for a long time but it’s worth the wait,” he told MCN. “It’s a step forward. The bike we had from 2008 to last year was a great package and we had a lot of success on it but we’re just looking for that little bit more and I think we’ve found it.
“Over recent years we’ve been sticking petrol in the bike and setting off and lapping at 131/132mph but now we need to go faster, so we needed something that’d make us go a little bit quicker and I think with this bike we’ve got that. We were so close last year, we just needed a little bit more power. We’re still learning, of course, we need to understand the bike and we’re making tweaks all the time.”