A multiple Irish superbike champion is on track to become the fastest Isle of Man TT competitor from his country, thanks to a tyre switch to Bridgestone which many people called ‘crazy.’
Brian McCormack has never felt better about his chances at the famous event and is hoping to emulate his 15th place finish in 2013, while setting a southern Ireland speed record currently held by Alan Bonner.
Brian’s previous fastest average lap was 123.8 mph but he has since upped it to 126mph from a standing start since turning to Bridgestone.
Brian made the change after his late friend Aidan Lynam encouraged him to try Bridgestone’s BATTLAX V02 for many months.
The 32 year-old Waterford star raised eyebrows in the two-wheel world for changing a winning formula which had served him well for years, not least when considering he is the only competitor at the Isle of Man TT to be with the world’s largest tyre company.
He said: “A lot of people said I was crazy and there were some murmurings, but people are now coming up to me now asking for a set to test.
“It could have been seen as a foolish move but I wanted to try something different. I’m sure Aidan will be smiling down at me if he sees the times I’m recording with Bridgestone. He’d be saying ‘I told you so!’
Brian is a perennial challenger in the superbike, superstock and supersport series but lost confidence at the TT over the past couple of years.
“Bridgestone has restored my confidence, for definite,” he added. “I never really felt relaxed on the bike, which is not the case any more. Stability is a big factor on any bike, let alone around here. I have so much more grip and stability on the Bridgestone tyres and I feel much more relaxed as a result.”
Brian said that his 2mph speed improvement can be attributed to his tyre choice and he is confident of an Isle of Man TT to remember.
“My best year was in 2013 and I’m looking to better that. I’m hoping for a top 10 finish and want to become the fastest competitor from Ireland. That has always been a big goal of mine.”
Bridgestone’s product manager Gary Hartshorne said: “Brian is a class act, so to gain this feedback is a tremendous boost for us all. We have always been confident in our products and it is great to receive this sort of endorsement.
“We’ll be right behind him in his efforts at the Isle of Man TT and hope he can reach his individual goals. He’s certainly got the raw pace and natural ability to do this and we wish him all the best.”