Michael Dunlop’s plans for the 2018 road racing season have been up in the air through winter with the 15-time TT winner linked to various outfits since he stormed to victory in last year’s Senior TT.
Rumoured to have been talking to Honda, Tyco BMW and others as well as his trusted Hawk squad, where Dunlop would ride in 2018 became very much a mystery with it thought the Ulsterman was dismayed with the performance of the GSX-R last year, especially at the Ulster Grand Prix.
Dunlop himself futher added fuel to the fire when he tweeted pictures of a BMW S1000RR superstock machine and PTR prepared Honda CBR600RR on social media.
However, these pictures from Cartagena this morning, where British Superbike and road racing teams are testing ahead of the season, suggest Dunlop could very well be staying with the Hawk Suzuki effort for the superbike class.
The team had previously confirmed to MCN that Dunlop would test the GSX-R Superbike at Cartagena, but it’s understood there’s been no ‘official announcement’ as to whether he’ll stay with the team for this year’s road races.
However, with time running out – remaining with Hawk would now seem the most likely option with Dunlop after he turned down a deal to ride the Tyco BMW vacated by Ian Hutchinson after his defection to Honda.
UPDATE: An announcement that Dunlop will race the Buildbase Suzuki in the superbike classes on the roads this year is expected imminently. He will run his own, MD Racing machines in Superstock and Supersport.
Text and images – MCN