In 2022, the Isle of Man TT races are returning after a couple of years off, and so is John McGuinness. McPint returns aboard a Honda Fireblade (aka the CBR1000RR) with the Honda Racing UK team.
It’s big news for the TT, and big news for Honda, since McGuinness won a whole boatload of awards aboard Fireblades over the years—a dozen Isle of Man races, in fact, including five Superbike races, six Senior races and a Superstock race. In total, he has 23 wins at the Isle of Man, the second-highest total of any TT racer (Joey Dunlop’s 26 wins are the record to beat).
McGuinness’s greatest triumphs probably came in the early 2010s; in 2017, he teamed up with Guy Martin on a much-publicized Honda-riding superteam. Unfortunately for both of them, the just-introduced Fireblade had issues.
An electronic problem at the North West 200 put McGuinness into the weeds, causing him a serious leg injury that prevented him from racing in early 2018, after he’d switched over to the reborn Norton factory effort. In 2019, he had an unsuccessful year riding a mixture of Norton and Honda bikes. He signed with a Kawasaki-mounted team in 2020 and 2021, but those races were canceled due to COVID-19.
Now, he’s back on a Honda, with BSB racer Glenn Irwin as his teammate. Irwin is new to the TT, so maybe Honda figures this is a good way for McGuinness to pass the torch onwards. He’s pushing 50, after all, which isn’t as big a deal at the TT, but it’s worth remembering.
Next year’s Isle of Man races will be live broadcast, so you can actually watch McGuinness race on your screen, instead of waiting for updates—more updates on how you can do that as the races approach.