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Last Updated: Tuesday, 19 December 2006, 18:12 GMT
McWilliams confirms MotoGP return
Jeremy McWilliams
McWilliams suffered a broken leg during testing at Jerez
Jeremy McWilliams is to return to MotoGP next season after being named as one of new team Ilmor's two riders.

The Northern Irishman, still recovering from injuries suffered recently during an Ilmor test in Spain, will be joined by Australian Andrew Pitt.

McWilliams, 42, said: "I'm very pleased to be part of a new team and obviously I'm delighted to be back in MotoGP.

"We have a very good product to work with, but there is a lot of developing that needs to be done."

The Northampton-based Ilmor team is owned by Mario Illien, a Swiss veteran of several success motorsport ventures, both on four wheels and two.

We have a brand new bike and very little testing time. It's going to be hard but I'm really looking forward to it

Jeremy McWilliams

McWilliams said: "Having spent some time with him and the team his passion and dedication is evident - you can see that he's not a man who's used to coming second.

"He takes his racing incredibly seriously, he's a legend and whilst I know his expectations in terms of hard work are high he's realistic about what we can achieve over the next year.

"We have a brand new bike and very little testing time. It's going to be hard but I'm really looking forward to it.

"At the end of the day, that's what MotoGP is all about - it's hard work - if it was easy, everyone would be doing it."

Illien added: "The main reason behind signing McWilliams and Pitt was for their skills in further developing the overall bike package and making us more competitive as a team."

  • McWilliams head a six-strong British and Irish contingent in GP racing in 2007.

    The 250cc class will include Dan Linfoot and Kevin Coughlan on Winona WCM Aprilias and Eugene Laverty on an LCR Honda.

    Bradley Smith, 16, has been retained Repsol Honda in the 125cc class and is joined by Danny Webb on the Arie Molenaar Racing Honda.

    McWilliams' surgery is successful
    06 Dec 06 |  Motorbikes
    McWilliams hurt in MotoGP crash
    30 Nov 06 |  Motorbikes
    McWilliams offered MotoGP return
    30 Oct 06 |  Motorbikes
    Ilmor MotoGP team to make debut
    06 Oct 06 |  Motorbikes


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