In that time, Hillier has established himself as one of the finest TT racers of his generation and last year was no exception. As well as enjoying three more top four finishes, the highlight of which was a close second place to Michael Dunlop in the solitary Monster Energy Supersport 600cc Race, he took fourth place in both the RST Superbike and PokerStars Senior TT Races.
Since winning the Newcomers Trophy on his debut in 2008, he’s competed in 50 races and only failed to finish three. Indeed, his retirement in last year’s RL360 Quantum Superstock Race was his first DNF since 2010.
Of his 47 race finishes, no fewer than 36 have been inside the top ten. With the exception of 11th place in the 2016 Superbike Race, he hasn’t finished outside the top ten since 2011, a phenomenal record and testament to both his and the team’s abilities.
With a fastest lap of 132.414mph, set in 2015, Hillier is currently the fifth fastest rider in TT history and the fastest Kawasaki rider ever. In fact Hillier has one of the best TT records of recent times, having achieved a total of ten podiums, and the Hampshire-based rider will again go into next year’s event as a favourite for honours in all classes.
Speaking about next season, Quattro Plant JG Speedfit Kawasaki team boss Pete Extance said: “It’s great to have James back on board for 2018. His consistency around the TT Mountain Course is remarkable and I feel that it’s only a matter of time before he stands on the top step of a superbike TT race podium.
“We’d like to thank and welcome back the renewed support of John Murphy’s Quattro Plant team who were with us when we enjoyed our first TT win and many podiums since over the last five years.”
Hillier added: “I feel really confident racing around the Mountain Course now and that’s in no small way thanks to Pete and the Quattro Plant JG Speedfit Kawasaki team. Last year I felt really good in all classes and this year I won’t be going in to any race thinking that I can’t win it.”
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