Roads: James Hillier to contest Isle of Man TT with WTF Racing Honda

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James Hillier will contest this year’s Isle of Man TT and North West 200 onboard a Honda Fireblade after agreeing a deal with the new WTF Racing team.

The team is operated by Bennetts British Superbike Championship outfit OMG Racing, of-which Hillier raced for on the roads in 2022 and 2023 onboard Yamaha machinery.

Hillier, a 14-time TT podium finisher and winner of the 2013 Lightweight TT, will contest the RST Superbike, RL360 Superstock, and Milwaukee Senior TT Races.

Last year, Hillier recorded his fastest ever lap of the Mountain Course at 132.702mph on his way to sixth in the Senior TT. As a result, he became the fastest ever Yamaha rider at the event.

“Riding the Hondas will be a new challenge for me after two years on the Yamaha but given the performance we’ve seen of late from the Fireblade, whether in Superbike or Superstock trim, it’s one I’m really looking forward to,” Hillier said.

“The Honda is proven to be quick straight out the box, which shows how good the base setting is, and it’s a good all-round package. You only have to look at the entry to see how many Hondas there are and that speaks volumes.

“One area I struggled a bit with last year was top speed and the Hondas had the edge over me, so it’ll be good not to have that issue this year! We probably won’t run a full Superbike but will instead run a Superstock-spec bike in all races, albeit with a higher tune of engine for the Superbike and Senior Races.”

Alongside his efforts on tarmac, Hillier will also return to the Dakar Rally in 2025 with the team having previously worked together at the 2023 event.

“Keeping it safe and simple like that works better for me as it’s not easy swapping bikes all the time and this way will reduce the workload for all concerned,” Hillier continued. “I’ve got the same team and crew with me as I’ve had for the last two years – only the team’s name is different – and I’m confident of finding more speed and making another step forward from the results and lap speeds I achieved in 2023.”

The team are expecting to have access to Honda Racing UK’s data from 2023. That factory team was represented by John McGuinness last season at the TT.

Hillier is still to finalise his plans for the two Monster Energy Supersport Races, but an announcement is expected in the not-too-distant future.

WTF Racing will be using the tagline of ‘We’re The Future’ as they look to take at “proactive approach to carbon neutrality, whilst focusing on energy efficient programmes and logistics as well as a commitment to recycle racing components once they reach the end of their racing lifespan.”

Team Owner, Alan Gardner added: “When it comes to racing, especially a high level, saving the planet seems to be low on the priorities list. WTF have committed to racing responsibly from the outset and have already make considerable inroads to ensuring that the second our trucks leave for the North West 200 and then onto the Isle of Man TT, we will have already offset our carbon footprint.”

“Our name says, ‘We’re The Future’ but foremost, we’re a race team, and our focus will always be to win but that also means winning in the race to save the planet.”