Despite broken bones and wrecked bike Dan Kneen is ready for the 2011 TT
Despite the setback of two fractured vertebrae, a destroyed Kawasaki ZX10R Evo Superbike, and missing the first three rounds of the British Superbike season, Dan Kneen hopes to get his 2011 campaign fully under way this weekend.
The 23-year-old is heading into the 2011 Isle of Man TT fuelled by Monster Energy – which starts on Monday - with high hopes.
But ahead of Monday’s first practice session, the Manxman will be in action at the fourth round of the BSB season at Thruxton.
It will be Kneen’s first ride in the Evo class against the cream of British Superbike riders. He took victory on this circuit in last year’s Supersport Cup race and the fast flowing circuit suits the style of TT and roads specialist.
“I’m going to use the meeting more as a chance to get the bike setup and as a warm up for the TT as I haven’t really had a chance to ride it in a race yet.”
“I like the circuit and I’m really looking forward to getting out there, just to be riding again and will just give it my best and hopefully come away with a decent result.”
Kneen made a positive start to his road’s season at last weekend’s North West 200 by qualifying in 11th in the Supersport race and he was lying in 13th on the last lap
when water in the electrics caused his retirement.
The meeting was abandoned after just one race, meaning Kneen did not have the chance to ride the Superbike in anger.
Support from sponsor Dave Evans of Marks Bloom Racing has not waivered and a replacement motorcycle has been supplied to replace the one destroyed in the pre-season test crash. Slick Bass, of Slick Performance in the Isle of Man, has done a great job helping to get the bikes ready for the season.
Kneen will ride the Kawasaki ZX-10R EVO Superbike, which is basically a standard engine in a superbike chassis, as well as campaigning a ZX-10R Superstock machine and the 2008 R6 Yamaha he had last year in the Supersport races.
After racing at Thruxton on Monday, Kneen will fly back to the Island with aim of joining the first practice session.
“I just hope the weather sorts itself out and we can get some good practice sessions in, get the bikes set up and myself dialled in. I’m really looking forward to getting out on the Kawasaki.”
In 2010, in his first ever TT, the privateer and triple Manx Grand Prix-winner was 10th overall in the TT Solo Championship with a 5th in the first Supersport race, 8th in the Senior, 10th in Supersport 2 and 12th in the Superbike. Taking second overall in the 2010 BSB Supersport Cup rounded out a successful season with some fine top 10 results, plus there were wins at Dundrod and the title of Fastest Newcomer at the Ulster Grand Prix.
“I would like to thank my team and sponsors, especially Marks Bloom Accountants, Wemoto.com, ELAS, Slick Performance, my trade sponsors and the staff at the Hyperbaric Chamber, without whom my swift recovery would not have been possible.”
Find out more about the Isle of Man Hyperbaric Chamber at the website