James Hillier, David Johnson and Ian Hutchinson are top contenders to lead OMG Racing's maiden roads campaign in 2020

James Hillier is looking for a new challenge in 2020 after parting company from the Bournemouth Kawasaki team after a decade.
James Hillier is looking for a new challenge in 2020 after parting company from the Bournemouth Kawasaki team after a decade.
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Several top riders are in line to spearhead Bennetts British Superbike team OMG Racing’s international road racing debut in 2020.

The team will run two riders in the Superbike and Superstock classes on BMW S1000RR machinery at the North West 200 and Isle of Man TT and will also contest the Supersport races, with a Yamaha R6 the machine of choice.

Ian Hutchinson is set to ride for a new team next year after two seasons with Honda Racing.

Ian Hutchinson is set to ride for a new team next year after two seasons with Honda Racing.

OMG Racing remains fully committed to its BSB programme, with the returning Luke Mossey and former MotoGP rider Héctor Barberá at the helm, while Billy McConnell will compete in the National Superstock 1000 Championship.

An announcement on Wednesday confirmed the team’s exciting new plans for next year, with the first rider in the road racing line-up due to be confirmed on Thursday morning.

The obvious contenders include James Hillier, who announced recently that he had opted to take on a new challenge next year following a decade with Pete Extance’s Bournemouth Kawasaki team, while Australian rider David Johnson is also a free agent after his contract with Honda Racing was not renewed for 2020.

Ulsterman Glenn Irwin and up-and-coming star Davey Todd were revealed as Honda’s new-look international roads team in November, taking over from Johnson and 16-time TT winner Ian Hutchinson.

Aussie David Johnson rode for Honda Racing this year but was not retained by the team for a second season.

Aussie David Johnson rode for Honda Racing this year but was not retained by the team for a second season.

Yorkshireman Hutchinson rode a BMW S1000RR at the Macau Grand Prix under the Team Milwaukee by SMT banner and is another big-name rider who has yet to officially reveal his plans for next season.

OMG team principal Paul Curran said he had signed “household TT names” to lead the team’s foray into international road racing and Hutchinson, Johnson and Hillier certainly fit that bill, with Johnson and Hillier the most likely line-up.

Curran said: “This is obviously a huge announcement as we prepare to take on our first ever roads season as a team.

“Road racing is something which has been on our radar for a while now but was a big investment in terms of time and resources, the team ownership agreed that it was something we couldn’t pass up on though – so it became a case of assembling a team capable of winning.

“Our focus and commitment to British Superbikes won’t be changing, so our supporters can expect us to give 100 percent to both the BSB and the roads across the season.

“We have some vastly experienced people coming on-board to help us develop behind the scenes, and on the bikes themselves – some household TT names – which we’ll be announcing over the coming days,” he added.

“We’re not competing just for the fun of it, we’re racing to win and to shake up the road racing competitions as we have done on the circuits.”

Northern Ireland’s Josh Elliott secured OMG Racing’s maiden BSB victory this season in the opening round of the championship at Silverstone. The team only joined the series in 2018 but has made impressive progress over the past two seasons.