Brotherly rivalry will help Honda in BSB 2020, says Glenn Irwin

Glenn Irwin says having his brother Andrew alongside him at Honda will allow them to drive development of the new Honda CBR1000RR-R forward quicker

Glenn Irwin, Andrew Irwin - Honda Racing BSB

Glenn Irwin says Honda has ‘pulled a nice move’ enlisting both himself and his brother Andrew for the 2020 British Superbike Championship as their strong working relationship will be key in getting the new CBR1000RR-R up to speed.

The Northern Irishman joins the factory-backed team this season alongside Andrew – who competed with Honda in 2019 – as part of a deal that will see him ride the new Fireblade in BSB, at the North West 200 and for the first time at the Isle of Man TT.

It won’t be the first time the Irwins have raced alongside one another after Andrew joined Glenn on the PBM Ducati in place of the injured Shane Byrne in 2018, but this will be their first full campaign together.

Both race winners at BSB level now, Glenn says the rivalry between himself and his brother is competitive but friendly, which in turn will help drive development of the new Superbike forward.

“I had a few rounds where a couple of years ago where he was my team-mate and he was just a kid, new to Superbike and now he is a race winner,” he told Visordown. “The rivalry can work both ways. Brothers are brothers, some get on, some don’t. we’re lucky we have a great friendship, he is my best mate as well and we encourage each other a lot.

“There is nobody more you want to beat more on track than your brother but you don’t have a hatred towards each other, no jealousy, we like to see each other do well. I think for the team I think they have pulled a nice move because to develop a bike you need a clear understanding, two team-mates that are both competitive – I think we have a really nice blend and I’m looking forward to having him as my team-mate.

“There will be complete honesty with each other, if I don’t get the strong result that day I want my brother to get it.”

Discussing the new Honda itself, Irwin is impressed by the Fireblade in stock form and feels there is a lot of potential in the package.

“For a complete road bike, the pace you can do on this thing is incredible. All the electronics that come with it I can see how it’d be so good on the and how good it will be on track. As the bike sits now you could compete in Superstock on it

“To be competitive in Superbike requires a lot of work and the team are fully aware of that but we have a nice base package to start with. The potential is there, it will take a lot of work, but it is nice to say the potential is there.”