Birchall brothers chase second world sidecar title

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After completing the 2013 season as runners-up in the FIM Sidecar championship, Ben and Tom Birchall will be going all out to secure their second world title in 2014.

The Mansfield brothers encountered some teething problems with the new machine which prevented them from scoring points in the opening rounds of the 2013 world championship.

But once they overcame these the LCR Suzuki proved to be more than capable of carrying Ben and Tom to victory, and they went on to take an amazing seven pole positions and seven race wins to pick up 191 championship points, missing out on the title by a mere 11 points.

The Mitchells of Mansfield-supported team intend to contest the full 2014 world championship on the LCR Suzuki and welcome a round in the UK for the first time in recent years at Donington Park at the end of May which gives sponsors and supporters the chance to see the team in action on home tarmac.

Date clashes and a rule change in the Eastern Airways British championship prevents Ben (37) and Tom (27) from entering the championship as the top three teams in the world championship are ineligible for points, but they intend to contest a few rounds as wild cards once their world championship duties are completed.

The brothers switch to the F2 machine for the two major road races on the Isle of Man.

After winning their first TT race last season they return to the island with the intention of adding to their tally, and will once again be supported by Klaus Klaffenbock for their third visit to the island.

They will also race in the Southern 100 races later in the year where again they are previous race winners and will be seeking further glory in the annual event.

“We have been working hard throughout the winter months to make sure the outfit is in pristine condition for the start of the new season,” said Ben.

“We will put it through its paces in some pre-season testing as soon as the weather permits and we are both looking forward to the first race at Aragon in Spain when we will get our world championship challenge underway.”

2014 SIDECAR DATES - FIM World Championship: Rd 1, April 13, Aragon, Rd 2, May 25, Donington Park, Rd 3, June 14/15, Rijeka (2 races), Rd 4, June 27, Assen, Rd 5, July 13, Sachsenring, Rd 6, August 3, Assen, Rd 7, August 23/24, Oschersleben, Rd 8, September 20, Le Mans.

ISLE OF MAN TT - Practice, May 24-May 30, Race one, Saturday, May 31, Race two, Wednesday, June 2, Isle of Man Southern 100: July 7-10.

EASTERN AIRWAYS BRITISH F1 SIDECAR CHAMPIONSHIP

Rd 1, April 19-21, Brands Hatch, Rd 2, June 13-15, Snetterton Date clash, Rd 3, June 27-29, Knockhill Date clash, Rd 4, July 18-20, Brands Hatch, Rd 5, Aug 1-3, Thruxton Date clash, Rd 6, Sept 5-7, Donington Park, Rd 7, Sept 19-21, Assen Date Clash, Rd 8, Oct 3-5, Silverstone, Rd 9, Oct 17-18, Brands Hatch.