MOTORCYCLING: Mar-Train Racing in Macau debut with Dan Kneen

Mar-Train Racing team principal Tim Martin is confident Manx rider Dan Kneen can give the Northern Ireland team a day to remember at the 50th Suncity Macau Grand Prix this weekend.

Martin’s Mar-Train outfit is competing at Macau for the first time but Kneen has prior experience of the 3.8-mile Guia street course and there is quiet optimism that the 29-year-old will be in the mix on Saturday.

“It was important for us to get out racing again for our sponsors and for Yamaha UK,” said Martin.

“Macau is an event which has always been on the radar for me so I am excited that things finally fell into place to allow us to go. Whilst we are newcomers to the event Dan knows the circuit, so I am confident we can put on a good show and show how competitive the R1M package is now,” he added.

“Dan proved at the Ulster Grand Prix that he can mix it with the top guys so there is no reason why we cannot come away with a good result to end the season.”

Kneen missed the North West 200 and Isle of Man TT through injury this season but he managed to salvage a podium in the Superstock race at the Ulster Grand Prix.

The 12-lap race will be shown live on BT Sport 3 on Saturday morning from 7.30am GMT.

Meanwhile, Hawk Racing has been confirmed as Suzuki’s official British Superbike team for 2017, running the all-new GSX-R1000. Stuart Hicken’s team previously ran BMW machinery.

Michael Dunlop won the Superbike and Senior races at the Isle of Man TT this year on the Hawk BMW and set a new outright lap record at almost 134mph.

Wednesday’s expected announcement shines a spotlight on Dunlop’s plans for next season, with the 26-year-old recently admitting it would be difficult to turn away from the proven race-winning S1000RR package.