Phil Atkinson announced his partnership with Tsingtao WK Bikes and Pure Triumph for the 2013 season of Triumph Triple Challenge yesterday at Brands Hatch.
Last year Atkinson came third overall in the championship, narrowly missing out on second place by only six points. He was a contender throughout 2012, pushing championship winner Rob Guiver constantly.
Now entering his fourth season on the grid he is hoping this will be his year: “Last year things didn’t go as planned, things were difficult with sponsors and the stress showed on track. We have a great setup here, a strong team means a happy rider and that should bring out the best in me.
“I think Freddy Pett and Chrissy Rouse are my biggest competition for this year but we will see what happens when we get out on track.”
Atkinson’s new teammate Pauli Pekkanen will be riding in the Motorpoint British Supersport Championship and the team are also becoming the first to enter a Chinese bike in the Isle of Man TT.
Team Manager and owner of Hampshire Motorcycles, Dave Tyson, said it’s great to be finally working with Atkinson: “We’ve been trying to do something with Phil for ages but it just hasn’t happened. Finally this opportunity with Tsingtao came up and the deal was done in a day!
“In our eyes this is a long term thing and we’re hoping Phil and Pauli will be able to progress with us.”
Atkinson will be on his Triumph 675R for the first round of the Triumph Triple Challenge at Brands Hatch on the 5th – 7th April.