Portuguese road racer Luis Carreira is another big name newcomer planning to debut at the 2009 Isle of Man TT.
Performances at the Macau Grand Prix have brought the 31-year-old to the fore. He has made steady progress since his first Macau race in 2004, where he finished a creditable 24th. He followed that result with a 14th place and a ninth place before, last year, beating illustrious rivals to snatch a brilliant fourth.
It is that measured approach to his racing which brought Carreira to the attention of TT organisers.
The double Portuguese champion has been racing since 1998 and his short circuit credentials also saw him handed a ‘wildcard’ for the final round of the World Superbike Championship, held at Portimao in his native Portugal.
Carreira finished 21st and 28th in the two races with lap times only a few tenths slower than British Superbike favourite Chris Walker - further indication of his talent.
Carreira will contest the Dainese Superbike, Royal London 360 Superstock and Pokerstars Senior races under his regular Benimoto Yoshimura Suzuki banner.
In preparation for his debut the rider has been in the Isle of Man studying the course with Rider Liaison Officer Richard ‘Milky’ Quayle.
‘Having ridden at Macau, I’ve always been aware of the TT Races and it’s been an ambition of mine to compete at the biggest road race in the world.’
‘My performances on the roads have progressed steadily and I now feel that I’ve attained the results and gained enough experience that will allow me to tackle the Mountain Course at the standard required.’
‘I love racing at Macau and whilst I’m all too aware that the TT is considerably different, I believe it will stand me in good stead and enable me to score some solid results.’
‘I am working hard at learning the circuit at the moment and the recent visit has been invaluable so whilst I realise this is a long term plan, I’m hopeful of giving a good account of myself at TT2009.’
TT Rider Liaison Officer and former TT winner Richard Quayle added:
‘The entry list for TT2009 is getting stronger, and more exciting, all the time with new faces continually being added.’
‘Luis has an excellent and varied CV and I would anticipate that he will get to grips with the Mountain Course pretty quickly. He has beaten many of the UK’s best road racers out in Macau, especially this year, so it is clear that he has bags of talent and I’m confident that he will become a TT regular and a star of the future.’
Tourism and Leisure Minister Martyn Quayle concluded:
‘The TT is an international event and it is always exciting when high quality international riders show an interest in taking part.’
‘Luis Carreira has a diverse, but excellent CV and has already proved himself at international level and he will most definitely be a welcome addition to the event.’
‘I am sure he is going to be a big attraction for the fans.’