CLOGHER’S Keith Farmer is to remain a member of the Rapid Solictors Kawasaki team for the remainder of the 2013 season despite Paul Bird recruiting the veteran Japanese star Noriyuki Haga for the last three rounds of the MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship.
News of Haga’s arrival led to widespread speculation that Farmer’s days riding the Rapid Solictors Kawasaki ZX-10R were all but over.
Media reports suggested Farmer had split with the Rapid Solictors team but on Tuesday they clarified the situation by saying they would provide a third machine for the Clogher ace if and when he returned to full fitness.
“For a number of weeks now, Keith has suffered from a debilitating illness which has affected his performances on track. As a result, Keith has sought and continues to seek medical advice and has undergone tests whereby a diagnosis is expected soon and a programme of treatment can commence,” said a team spokesman.
“As well as being in contention to retain their MCE British Superbike Championship crown with Shane ‘Shakey’ Byrne, the team is contractually bound to field two riders for the remainder of the season so a combination of Keith’s illness, combined with the extra pressure to perform in the Showdown, whereby they felt it would be unfair to him, led to the team making the decision to engage the services of Haga.
“Contrary to speculation, Keith Farmer remains a member of the Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki team and will do so for the remainder of the 2013 season.
“Should Keith and the team deem him fit enough to race in any of the remaining MCE British Superbike Championship rounds this season, upon clearance from the BSB medical team, a third Rapid Solicitors Kawasaki would be made available for Keith to race.
“If he’s unable to race again this season at BSB level, another option being considered by the team is to field Keith in an end of season non-championship meeting of his choice whereby the physical demands and performance expectations may be somewhat reduced.”