Former British Supersport Champion Stuart Easton was today confirmed as partner to Karl Harris in the Hydrex Honda British Superbike team for the 2009 season.
Easton raced for Kawasaki last year but was sidelined through injury for the middle part of the season, and following his Macau success, Muir acted quickly to sign the Hawick rider who was the target for a number of other teams.
Both Harris and Easton will be aboard the Mick Shanley-prepared Hondas in all twelve rounds of the British Superbike Championship which gets underway at Brands Hatch at Easter and Easton's deal also sees him race the bike at Macau in order to defend his title. Easton also gets a new chief mechanic in the shape of former Rizla Suzuki man Pete Jennings
The third member of the team is the enigmatic Guy Martin who has secured a deal with Team SMR for the third year running. After last year's abortive campaign in BSB as well as the roads, the 27 year old from Kirmington will concentrate solely on the four big road race meetings, the North West 200, TT, Ulster Grand Prix and Macau.
"Working with the team in Macau was a real pleasure and the bike was one of the best I've ever ridden. As soon as Shaun talked to me about this season in BSB, I knew I had to be on that bike as it really is capable of winning the championship. I'm really fired up for next season and can't wait to start testing as we have a real chance of success," said Easton
Team boss Shaun Muir added: "We made huge strides last season and had some great results so now the foundations are set to continue the success. In Karl and Stuart, we have a pair of young and hungry riders who are determined to make the most of this opportunity in BSB and I have every confidence in them.
"Mick Shanley and Stuart's new Chief Engineer Pete Jennings are both determined to bring success for their riders and we expect to be in contention for the championship from the first round. Guy is the best current road racer yet to win a TT and I'm sure he'll put that right this year as he's now got the package that he wants in order to do that. Hopefully, 2009 will be our year!"
The team plans to unveil the new team livery and the opening of the new race HQ in the new year, winter testing will follow over the next couple of months before the season starts at Brands Hatch on Easter Monday, April 13th with the first of the major road races being the North West 200 on May 16th.