Norton is set to field two Aussie riders at the 2017 TT after attracting the signature of Aussie Josh Brookes to the factory team.
Brookes joins compatriot David Johnson, and both riders will compete on the all-new SG6, derived from the recently launched V4 SS road bike.
Brookes returns to the TT following a year racing in World Superbikes and is no stranger to the TT. He claimed fastest newcomer at the TT in 2013 finishing a best place of seventh in the 2014 Senior race with his fastest ever TT lap, a staggering 129.859mph, set in only his second year at the Island.
After a two-year absence on the challenging 37.73-mile Mountain Course, Brookes is looking to build on his TT success on the new 230bhp Norton.
Speaking from his home in Australia, Brookes said: “Firstly I want to come back to the TT, after SMR said I couldn’t ride at the TT over the last two years I’ve been desperate to get back and race at the island. I like the history of the Norton and it will be so great to be a little part of the Norton story. It’s just something that interests me, and I’m really excited by the project. It’s always hard to predict results, especially around the island so I think it’s important that I let it come to me. I’ve not been for two years, and I don’t know how much the Norton bike has improved, but I hear great things about the bike.
“My first ever race at the TT was in the Superbike and I got a top ten, so let’s hope we are better than that at least, but realistically if we finish the races without a problem, and I’m in the 132mph club by the end of the fortnight then we’ll be celebrating.”
The SG6 is hand built at Norton’s Donington Hall factory and is currently undergoing a punishing development and testing schedule in the hands of two-times TT winner and Norton development rider, Steve Plater. The bike will feature the V4 Aprilia CRT motor with Norton’s own V4 engine being raced in 2018.
Former Norton Factory rider Ian Mackman joins the team as a race engineer for 2017, joining experienced Norton Race Manager Johnny Cusack in the team along with TT legend Mick Grant who will continue in his role as Senior Advisor adding his extensive TT experience to the factory squad.