After sustaining injuries in the FIM World Endurance round at Le Mans last year, Simon Andrews is returning to racing for the 2014 Isle of Man TT in Rico Penzkofer’s paddock. The 29-year-old will be riding a BMW HP4 prepared by the Penz13.com BMW racing team, not only in the TT, but also the Macau Grand Prix and the North West 200.
During his TT debut in 2011, Andrews made it clear he was a serious competitor taking 11th in the Superstock and Senior races while setting a lap record of 125.134 mph, making him the third fastest newcomer of all time.
Add to that a fastest lap time of 126.001 around the TT Mountain Course, and you can start to see why his TT career includes four Top 15 finishes, along with a podium finish in the 2012 Macau Grand Prix where he took third.
“I’ve raced against Rico and know his bikes are well-built. I’ve had some success with BMW already when I started on the roads earlier in my career,” said Andrews. “With the help and support of BMW I believe the team will give me a good competitive bike. I’m looking forward to meeting all the team and really seeing what we can do together.”
Penzkofer must have a lot of faith in Andrews because not only is he riding for them in the 2014 TT, he has also been given the chance to serve as a back-up rider for the Penz13.com Franks Autowelt Racing Team in the 24 Hours of Le Mans and Bol d’Or.
According to Penzkofer, Andrews was scheduled to ride for his team in last year’s Macau Grand Prix but his accident at Le Mans put those plans on hold.
“The Isle of Man or Macau has been my greatest passion, my life, if you like. Over recent years we’ve built a special wealth of experience as a team and focused on the TT – not least because I raced the TT myself,” said Penzkofer.
“I now want to use this experience and get closer to the sharp end. Steve Mercer delivered our team’s best TT result last year with an 8th spot. I am happy that we’ve signed Simon and that he has faith in our team as he’s a really talented road racer.”