BMW will return to the Isle of Man TT in 2010, it has been announced.
The involvement of the German manufacturer is another major boost for the event, which recently announced a KTM superbike will race this year and that the 2010 TT will see the British racing debut of a Moto2 Grand Prix machine.
It is the first time since the late 1970s that an official BMW team has entered the TT, and the announcement comes just 12 months after the Bavarian manufacturer re-entered top flight motorcycle racing in the Superbike World Championship.
BMW first entered the TT in 1937 and has won 30 races, the majority in the sidecar class. The last time an official BMW team raced at the TT, more than 30 years ago, the riders were Helmut Dahne and Hans Otto Butenuth.
At the 2010 TT, the BMW Superbike will be ridden in both the Superbike and Senior TT races by Germany’s Rico Penzkofer, who finished fifth at last year’s Macau Grand Prix.
An official test rider for BMW, 34-year-old has been part of the major development team of the S1000RR, a bike that has created headlines all over the world both for its design and performance.
Penzkofer made a strong debut at the TT last year, when he contested the two Supersport races. He achieved a personal best lap of just under 120mph and left the Island with two bronze replicas.
With a year’s experience around the Mountain Course, the Borna rider is expected to feature more prominently this year and the former World Endurance Championship race winner is relishing his return to the TT.
“To be representing BMW on their return to the TT is a tremendous honour for me and after my debut last year I can’t wait to return to the Mountain Course.”
“Riding the Superbike will obviously present a new challenge, but the bike is superb and that, combined with my own improved knowledge of the course, should see us able to make a good impression.”
“Troy Corser and Ruben Xaus have proved in World Superbikes that the bike is competitive and we hope to do the same at the TT.”
Tourism and Leisure Minister Martyn Quayle added:
“It’s really exciting to see the return of such a prestigious marque to the Isle of Man TT and their involvement in the 2010 races is a great boost to an already strong list of manufacturers – more evidence that the TT is going from strength to strength.”