Guy Martin will sit out this year’s Isle of Man TT Races, as he sets his sights on tackling the world’s toughest mountain bike race – the Tour Divide.
His team, Tyco BMW, will instead focus their efforts around 11-time TT race winner Ian Hutchinson, who scored impressive treble winner on the island in 2015 and is now looking forward to campaigning Tyco BMW S 1000 RR machinery.
Martin has no plans to road race prior to his Tour Divide attempt and the Tyco BMW team is not actively looking to replace the Lincolnshire man at the aforementioned events.
Martin said: “I’m not done with motorbikes and if I race on the roads again this year it will be with the TAS team. The BMW bikes are mega and the team are spot on.
“I fancy a change of scenery. I’ve been racing the TT for 11 years. All I’ve really done since I was 18, except the trucks, is race motorbikes and my brain needs something else. Every year’s the same: testing, racing, then start again.
“It brought it home to me when I was lying in hospital after the Ulster Grand Prix crash. I’ve been on about the Tour Divide, the toughest pushbike race in the world, for three years and I thought I’ll blink and next thing I’ll be 45, so I’m going to do it this year.
“I like breaking myself mentally and the Tour Divide will be tough, but it’s same time at TT, so that’s forced me to make a choice.
“I’m not done with motorbikes. I’m attempting the Wall of Death record in the spring and having a go at the land speed record in the summer and if I do race on the roads it will be with TAS.
“After the Tour Divide I might never want to see a pushbike again – or never want to go road racing again, I don’t know. But I do know Bruce Anstey and John McGuinness are still racing the TT, and they’ve got a few years on me, so maybe I’ll come back next year. Or maybe I’ll find something else interesting to do. I’ve got more interests than just motorbikes and I just think let’s bloody have ‘em.”