Future Looking Bright for KTM/HMC SuperBike Racing Team

NEWS January 29, 2013

Future Looking Bright for KTM/HMC SuperBike Racing Team

Photo by Brian J Nelson

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (January 29, 2013) – The 2013 AMA Pro National Guard SuperBike season is just around the corner and KTM/HMC Superbike Racing has made big strides in the off-season to put themselves in position for a successful campaign. With the addition of Taylor Knapp and a healthy Chris Fillmore going in to 2013, crew chief Mitch Hansen has good reason to be optimistic knowing his team will be riding the dynamic KTM RC8’s to match up against the ruthless SuperBike competition for this upcoming season.

Last year marked the team’s first complete season as a SuperBike race team. Two-time AMA Pro Supermoto Champion and 2011 AMA Pro Vance & Hines XR1200 Titleholder, Chris Fillmore was on his way to a top-10 finish in the overall AMA Pro National Guard SuperBike standings before an injury mid-way through the 2012 season that kept him out for several weeks. The Michigan product bounced back, however, with two consecutive top-five finishes at NOLA Motorsports Park to close out the season and looks to carry that momentum in to 2013.

Even though Fillmore is going in to just his second consecutive season riding for Mitch Hansen and KTM/HMC Superbike Racing, the two have a history that runs a lot deeper than that. In fact, Hansen has been watching the 26-year-old develop for over a decade. When Fillmore was just 15, Hansen brought him to a test at Road America for the SuperMoto Team where he made the team and eventually landed on the podium in his first race shortly thereafter at Laguna Seca. The two reunited last season and expect to run a successful and complete 2013 season together.

“I’ve been living out in California and really just starting back with my training program,” said Fillmore. “Not that I haven’t been staying fit and riding, but I had another surgery to fix my hand up. Good news though is that I’ve gotten quite a bit more movement in it recently so I’ve been riding motorcross more. I’ve been getting that in once or twice a week. Yesterday, we had a couple practice bikes built up for us and we plan on breaking them in at Chuckwalla this weekend. My plan for the next week going forward is to do as many track days as possible to get myself up to speed.”

Taylor Knapp is the newest addition to KTM/HMC Superbike Racing and will play teammate to Fillmore. In 2012, Knapp started 14 races in SuperBike competition and accounted for eight top-10 finishes. However, it was the Michigan product’s fourth place finish at New Jersey Motorsports Park last year that caught Hansen’s attention.

“I'm thrilled to be riding with KTM/HMC Superbike Racing,” said Knapp. “It seems like the team is filled with a good group of guys and I’m looking forward to having the backing from them. It’s important for me to have that kind of backing and family-like team. My goal this year is to be better than last year and to hit the podium as many times as possible. I’ve been working very hard this offseason and just want that to show up in the results when the year is completed.”

Between Michigan natives Fillmore and Knapp, KTM Motorsports and Mitch Hansen have put together a solid duo. The right pieces are in place and only the 2013 season will tell the story on how far these two can climb up the ladder in the SuperBike ranks.

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