Double Macau Grand Prix Champion and MCE British Superbike winner Peter Hickman has joined the British team for this year’s Phillip Classic, replacing the injured Ryan Farquhar.
Hickman, 29, has never been to Australia, let alone Phillip Island and said: “It was John McGuinness who put me forward for the ride, as he thought I would be a good fit for the team.”
“It’s not going to be easy at all,” explained Hickman, who won’t see his Harris Yamaha for the first time until he gets down under.
2016 has been Hickman’s strongest year to date, after he snared race wins in race two at Silverstone at the opening BSB round and race one at the Brands Hatch finale that saw him finish seventh overall in the title fight with 233-points to his name.
This is why Hickman is not that worried that the first time he will saddle up aboard the Harris Yamaha will be on the Thursday non-official practice day at the ‘Island’.
“I pick things up pretty quickly so I don’t think it’ll be too much of a problem. I’m definitely feeling confident in myself and my riding,” said Hickman.
Returning for another tilt at beating the Australians in their own back yard for the third time in a row are Conor Cummins, who finished fourth overall this year with 140-points to his name, John McGuinness, who was one place behind Cummins, Glen Richards and James Hillier, while 58-year-old Keith Higgs will be riding once again as the captain.
Former 250cc/MotoGP star Jeremy McWilliams will yet again be the main man to fly the flag as he looks to not only claim victory for the UK team in the International Challenge, but to also hopefully walk away with the outright win for the Ken Wooton Perpetual Trophy, after having to share the win this year with Australian young gun Jed Metcher.
The Brits will also wheel in two new riders in the shape of Alex Sinclair and part-time magazine road tester Michael Neeves.