Ryan Vickers keen to deliver more success to Stratford-based British Superbike Championship team OMG Racing
RYAN Vickers knows it’s going to be a big ask to step into the shoes of British Superbike Championship winner Brad Ray at OMG Racing for 2023.
But the 23-year-old is relishing the challenge ahead and is targeting his best-ever BSB season yet.
The Thetford racer joins the Stratford-based team following Ray’s graduation to the international stage after signing a deal with Motoxracing for the new WorldSBK season.
Vickers is no stranger to the BSB paddock having taken victory in the Junior Superstock category in 2018, winning all but two races that season, eventually accruing a lead of more than 100 points against his nearest rival.
Last year was Vickers’ fourth BSB campaign and he’s now looking forward to lining up alongside Kyle Ryde on OMG’s championship-winning Yamaha R1.
“I’m so pleased to be given the opportunity to ride what I and many others perceive to be the best bike on the grid, with a team that have impressed a huge number of people by winning the championship,” he said.
“My love of Yamaha stems from my Superstock 600 British Championship win on-board an R6, so I’m looking forward to gelling with the R1 and being able to deliver OMG Racing the level of success they’ve become used to.
“I can’t thank Alan (Gardner, team owner] and Paul (Curran, team principal) enough for their belief in my abilities, and I’ll be working harder than ever to give them the results the team deserve.
“I appreciate that to step into the boots of the championship winner is a big ask, and Brad has set the bar high, but I relish the challenge and I’m excited for what I’m hoping will be my best season yet.”
Vickers made his BSB debut in 2019 and would spend three seasons with Lee Hard Racing Kawasaki. After two seasons blighted with injury, 2021 was a much better affair.
He recorded his best championship results with two fourth-placed finishes at Thruxton, as well as recording 18 top-ten finishes.
He also completed 29 of the 33 races contested that year.
The last campaign proved to be a difficult one after Vickers made the switch to FHO racing BMW, suffering 12 DNFs and missing three races due to injury.
With Vickers now back on board a Yamahas since his Junior Superstock days, OMG boss Alan Gardner has high hopes for his new rider.
“Ryan is a rider that OMG Racing have had their eye on for quite a while and has really impressed with both his performance on-track and his attitude off it,” he said.
“He’s a well-known and liked character within the paddock, and has proven himself to be a rider that will go above and beyond to constantly improve and better his lap times and ability, and that fits perfectly with us and our goals moving forward.
“We plan on pulling no punches in our pursuit of our second championship victory in 2023 and with both Ryan and Kyle on board our Yamaha R1s, we are feeling strong as we move into our sixth BSB season.”