Speaking to Bike Social ahead of their trip across the Irish Sea for the Isle of Man’s Classic TT over the August Bank Holiday weekend, Norton’s CEO Stuart Garner admitted that their TT racer, known as the SG2, is continuing its development and will take part in several club races in the coming months.
As revealed in an interview with Stuart Garner by Bike Social after the TT, the Donington Park-based team will be continuing to develop the engine and suspension platform but because the bike is a prototype it cannot enter the British Superbike series or its support races. Stuart Garner said, “We’re not going to take it too competitively but we’ll probably go and do a bit of under-the-radar club racing, which is essentially testing and practise ahead of next May.”
The factory riders, Ian Mackman and Dan Hegarty, will pilot the two Aprilia V4-engineed bikes as they look to build upon the 24th and 36th place finishes respectively in the 2013 Senior TT.
Meanwhile, the Classic TT is only weeks away but it’s all very relaxed at Norton HQ – the team are about to move from their Donington Park unit to the recently acquired and much more fitting of a heritage brand, Donington Hall. The Bennetts 500cc Classic TT Race takes place on the 37 ¾ mile Mountain Course on Saturday 24th August and the aforementioned Mackman and Hegarty will be riding a pair of borrowed stock-standard Lansdowne-spec Manx Norton’s but the Norton Boss is not expecting them to be setting any lap records, “The boys haven’t ridden them before and we know that we’ll be down 10-15mph on top speed because we don’t have any non-slippy fairing which therefore makes us uncompetitive”, said Garner.
“We’re going over the festival to ride safe and have some fun but the boys will still be flat out I’m sure. Our hard core racing is the TT so we’ll take the staff over to the Classic as a bit of a busman’s holiday and enjoy it”, he continued.
Other top TT names riding Norton’s mainly from private collections are Michael Dunlop, Guy Martin and Conor Cummins. Commenting on the number of Norton’s racing in the 500c Race Garner said; “Well, it’s the Norton era, the 1950’sand 60’s so the Classic TT was made for us, who knows what’ll happen in 20 years time though, we weren’t very competitive then!”