The MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship's first and only female racer, Jenny Tinmouth, has been given the biggest opportunity of her career after signing for the Honda Racing team. The Ellesmere Port rider will contest the premier class aboard the Superbike-spec Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade, with team-mates Dan Linfoot and Jason O'Halloran.
Tinmouth has been a ground-breaker in the championship since first joining the series in 2011 and has achieved many firsts for women in motorcycle racing, including becoming the first female rider to score a point in MCE BSB. Tinmouth has also experienced success at the Isle of Man TT races, where she currently holds the record as the fastest female around the Mountain course with an average lap speed of 119.9455mph.
Tinmouth will become a full-time member of Louth-based Honda Racing, competing alongside O'Halloran and Linfoot for the entire 12-round championship as they make their return to the series after spending 2014 working on the development of the CBR1000RR Fireblade. Honda won the championship in 2013 with Alex Lowes.
Tinmouth said: "I'm absolutely over the moon and cannot believe I'm riding for Honda Racing. The offer was totally unexpected. I went for a meeting with Nick [Campolucci] to discuss the season and had a few cheeky questions I wanted to ask about Honda helping me out with bikes, and when the offer came I couldn't believe what I was being asked. I went into the meeting thinking it would just be some help and came out as a full-time Honda rider. It's always been my ultimate dream to ride for the team and to have the opportunity this year is just amazing. I'm riding the Honda BSB bike for the first time during a team test in March and I can't wait."
Honda Racing team manager, Havier Beltran, said: "This is a fantastic opportunity for Jenny being part of the Honda Racing team, alongside Dan and Jason. She's been on Hondas for a couple of years now running her own team. This year will be a huge learning curve, getting used to the team and the bike, but will also really push her in the series and hopefully generate some good results. It will also be a learning curve for us, but we're excited for the challenge. We've been aware of Jenny for a while now, not only being the only female in the BSB series but also her successes at the Isle of Man, and can't wait to see her on the bike at the first test in March."
Nick Campolucci, Head of Motorcycles at Honda (UK) commented: "There'll be a focus on Jenny because she's a female racer, of course. After all, she's the first and only woman rider to compete in British Superbikes. But she's a proven competitor and current Isle of Man TT lap record holder. Jenny joins the team on merit and we are very pleased that we have the opportunity to work with her.
“Honda has served up a number of firsts when it comes to broadening the representation of women in motorsport and Jenny is the latest female member of the Honda Racing family. She joins British motocross sensation Natalie Kane, and Laia Sanz, who achieved the highest ever placing in this year's Dakar Rally, by a female rider, finishing ninth overall in this year's race."