The 2022 Isle of Man TT races ended for James Hillier and RICH Energy OMG Racing this afternoon with the six-lap Milwaukee Tools Senior TT. Competing in four races across two weeks of action around the Mountain Course, Hillier declared himself ‘happy’ after completing the gruelling 226-mile final race in sixth place.
The race was delayed from it’s traditional Friday slot after an incident during the sidecar race put the race back to 4.15pm before inclement weather passed across the island. Bright sunshine and a stiff breeze welcomed the riders up onto the Glencrutchery Road for the blue riband event and the final chance for Ringwood’s Hillier to return to the mix after a disappointing second Supersport race.
Making his 64th TT start, the Dakar hopeful got away well and challenged the leaders into Glen Helen for the first time. With pit-stops after two and four laps it was always going to be nip and tuck amongst the teams to get their riders away quicky. At the end of lap two, Hillier overshot his mark in pit land and had to reverse himself back before lap four saw a personal best of the fortnight at 129.94mph kept him in top six contention. His second stop on lap four saw Hillier have an issue with the rear wheel, costing valuable time but two consistent final laps were enough to keep Hillier’s fire burning ahead of 2023.
James Hillier, 6th Senior TT: “That’s TT 2022 over, it’s been a challenging two week. After the delayed start we got the Senior TT underway; I really enjoyed that race more than any other this week and was really pleased to finish on a high. I messed up the first pit stop but I don’t think that would have affected the result too much. That race reminded me why I do the TT; It was a long race, but I felt that I could have kept going. It’s been a bit frustrating at times, I’ve not quite found myself or the setting. For RICH Energy OMG Racing Yamaha’s first time, the bikes didn’t break down and we finished every race we started. We have a lot of data and information and that will keep us in the mix for the future.”
Paul Curran, Team Principal: “That’s been a big two weeks of learning both on and off track and I couldn’t be prouder. James and the team have been professional throughout, even when the disappointing news broke that we couldn’t run the Superstock Yamaha R1. It’s a vastly different discipline to what we are used to, but we’ve worked hard to make James as comfortable and as fast as possible and his reaction after today’s Senior TT said it all. Congratulations to everyone for a busy but rewarding TT2022.”
Alan Gardner, Team Owner: “It’s been a rollercoaster two weeks on the Isle of Man. It’s been a dream of mine to bring a team here and compete and although we missed Davo’s input, James and his crew worked tirelessly to bring both Yamaha R1’s up to speed. I was incredibly disappointed with the organisers decision not let us run our Superstock Yamaha R1 after the efforts put in by the team to build James the best bike possible but make no mistake, I’m very proud of the whole team for their hard work and dedication. Onwards to Knockhill, now!”