O’Halloran confirmed for BSB seat in 2009
Jason O’Halloran, the 2007 Australian Supersport Champion, will compete in the premier BSB series on a full time basis in 2009 with the SMT Honda squad.
The 20-year old immediately impressed the BSB paddock in his guest outings in 2008 not only with his undoubted talent and speed but also his aptitude for learning new circuits. Despite a punishing schedule that saw him flying back and forth between the UK and Australia to compete in the respective championships, O’Halloran scored points in five out of his six races with the highlight being a brilliant 7th at Silverstone.
O’Halloran went on to finish fourth in the Australian Superbike Championship and will arrive in the UK in February in preparation for pre-season testing on the team’s all new 2009 Honda Fireblades.
O’Halloran will be based near the SMT headquarters at Skelmersdale.
In addition, the team are expanding their outfit to two riders and they will be fielding Lancashire’s Adam Jenkinson in the Metzeler National Superstock Championship, also on a 2009 Honda Fireblade. The 24-year old was the team’s original Superbike rider in 2008 and was sensational at the opening round at Thruxton where he ran inside the top six but a crash saw him sustain serious breaks in both arms and he was cruelly forced to sit out the entire racing calendar. Jenkinson is no stranger to the Superstock series having finished 9th overall in 2007, also notching up two rostrum finishes.
SMT will be entering their third year of competition in the British Championships and, with the team line-up and infrastructure already in place, they will be hoping 2009 will see them make further strides forward.
Team owner Robin Croft said: “We’ve got a really strong line-up for 2009 and we’re delighted to have Jason and Adam on-board. Jason gelled with the team as soon as he came over to England and his talents were plain to see so we were determined to sign him as soon as we could. He’s young, he’s fast and he’s also extremely determined so February can’t come soon enough and we’re confident we’ll be challenging right from the very first round.”
“We wanted to do all we could to keep Adam as well, after his terrible luck last year, and thanks to our loyal sponsors we’ve been able to do just that and expand the team to two riders. This will be a full assault on the title and will give Adam the ideal opportunity to get back to the form he showed at the beginning of 2008 before, hopefully, moving back into the Superbike class in 2010.”
In addition, the team are currently expanding their premises at Skelmersdale from where their 2009 assault will be based.