Australia’s two-time world superbike champion Troy Corser will make his first local appearance in nearly seven years for the 2018 Phillip Island Classic.
Troy will head the Aussie squad in the blue-chip International Challenge teams’ event to end the three-year domination by the Jeremy McWilliams-led United Kingdom.
Jeremy will again lead the UK team and Colin Edwards will lead the USA team. There will also be a team from New Zealand.
It has also now been confirmed that the most successful grand prix racer of our time, Giacomo Agostini, will also attend.
The 75-year-old Italian icon will parade the 4.45km grand prix circuit on the Friday, Saturday and Sunday aboard his 1972/73 title-winning 350cc MV Agusta.
It is one of four rare MV Agusta race bikes from a private collection in Milan.
Troy should feel right at home on the Phillip Island circuit where he won seven WorldSBK races between 1995 and 2006.
“It’s time to get back and race at home in front of a Phillip Island home crowd,” he says. “It’s been a long time.”
Troy’s WorldSBK titles came in 1996 with Ducati and 2005 with Suzuki. He also rode for Aprilia, Yamaha, Foggy Petronas and BMW in the production series.
He retired in 2011 with WorldSBK records for the most pole positions (43), the most races (377), the most podiums (130) and the most points (4000).
Troy living in UK
Troy now lives in the UK with wife Sam and two teenage kids, Kalani and Kelisa.
“I have been doing the Goodwood events with a great team at BMW Classic, riding some old museum bikes.
“It’s been a lot of fun. Everyone tells me the Island Classic is a great event so with it being the 25th anniversary, it feels like a good time to come back and give it a go.”
Troy, who turns 46 on November 27 and last raced competitively in 2011, will ride a 1982 Honda Harris F1 machine in the 2018 International Challenge.
He’ll join forces in the Australian team with a number of his 1990s domestic contemporaries such as fellow Aussie superbike champions Shawn Giles and Steve Martin.
“Rex Wolfenden is preparing my bike so I’m hoping for a weapon,” Troy says.
“His bikes are always well prepared. I’d like to test it prior, but not sure that’s gonna happen. If not, I’ll just rock up and ride. I’ve done it before.”
Phillip Island memories
Tickets for the 25th annual event on January 26-28 go on sale tomorrow Thursday (October 26, 2017). Click here.
Troy has fond memories of riding at the Victorian circuit.
“Phillip Island is one of the best circuits in the world and definitely one of my favourites. I’ve had some great races there,” he says.
“The support during my career was always great. I am sure some friends and family will come out to watch at the Classic and I’m hoping my old race fans will cheer us on from Corser Hill.
“There is nothing like a home crowd support. Something I’ll never forget from my racing. No better place for me to win a Championship than right there at home.”
These days, Troy is a big part of the The Race Academy which runs a series of track-based schools at famous circuits such as Mugello, Valencia, Brno and Catalunya.
“I have developed the course at The Race Academy, taught all my fellow instructors, and we offer a complete professional training programme for riders. We focus on control and safety, and with that the lap times come. I am very proud of what we achieve,” he says.
“We mostly run at world championship level tracks, with the chance to ride a BMW S1000RR, or your own bike, and optional pillion instruction.”
He tries to get back to Australia once a year, but says his free weekends at home are spent on the sidelines at Kalani’s football.
“And we get a bit of dirt bike riding in just for fun. And Kelisa is into her gymnastics and dance so there’s performances to watch there. I’m still playing golf and have a little hit around at tennis these days. I’m keeping fit and I’m ready to race.”
Troy was inducted into the Australian Motorsport Hall of Fame early in 2017, marking his achievement and contribution to motorcycle racing both here and internationally.
The International Island Classic will showcase more than 300 riders and 500 historic bikes and sidecars competing over three days.