The C&L Fairburn Properties/Jackson Racing team will step up to the all-new British Superbike Championship Pathway-specification class in 2024 with a two-man team led by current rider Billy McConnell. He’ll be joined by new signing Jaimie van Sikkelerus who makes the move from the British Supersport Championship.
Since joining in 2022, Chris Fairburn’s team have quickly established themselves as one of the most professional in the paddock and will move to the premier BSB class with Honda Fireblade machinery prepared by Jackson Racing and built to the new Pathway specification technical regulations being introduced next year.
McConnell will enter his third year with the team and return to the BSB class he last competed in on a full-time basis in 2016. With 120 BSB races under his belt, the Australian first contested the series in 2006 when he rode for Virgin Yamaha, having won the Virgin Mobile Yamaha R6 Cup the previous year, and has subsequently ridden for MSS Kawasaki (2008), Smiths Racing BMW (2015) and FS-3 Racing Kawasaki (2016) as well as having a one-off outing for OMG Racing Suzuki four years ago.
The 36-year old’s best season came in 2008 when he finished 12th overall for Nick Morgan’s MSS Kawasaki team whilst his best race result was taken in 2015 when he finished third behind Josh Brookes and Peter Hickman at Cadwell Park on the Smiths Racing BMW. In total, the Adelaide resident has recorded 29 top ten finishes in BSB.
The 2014 British Supersport Champion will now make the move back to BSB after another successful season in the Pirelli National Superstock series where he’s taken first and third at Thruxton as well as additional top three finishes at Silverstone, Snetterton, Brands Hatch and, most recently, Donington Park.
Dutchman van Sikkelerus, meanwhile, joins the team after impressing in the British Supersport Championship. The 26-year old made his debut in the middleweight division in 2021 where, after taking a podium finish at Donington Park, he finished tenth overall.
He improved to fifth overall last year after taking five podiums, which included a maiden victory at Donington, and currently lies in sixth overall in this year’s championship standings after another victory on the MPM Routz Racing Yamaha at Donington.
Billy McConnell: “I’m really looking forward to getting back into BSB and the new Pathway rules are a way of getting back onto the grid. It’s been a few years since I rode in BSB, but I’ve always wanted to get back and mix it up with the top guys again. With 15 more races in the season, we’ll get a stack more track time and it’s good to get everything finalised before heading into winter. I’m moving back to BSB with a good team so I can’t wait to get stuck in and see what we can do.”
Jaimie van Sikkelerus: “I’m very excited to work together with the C&L Fairburn Properties/Jackson Racing team in the new BSB Pathway class! A lot of things will change for me next year – new team, new bike, new class – but after 3 years in Supersport with our private team, it’s the right moment. I’m very motivated and will learn a lot and I’m delighted to stay in the British Championship because of the event, the high-level racing and the big crowds. Because of that, I’m extremely thankful to Chris Fairburn and the team, as well as my personal sponsors, for giving me this opportunity. I can’t wait to jump into the new 2024 season!”
Chris Fairburn, Team Owner: “It’s been a whirlwind 18 months which started when we went from being one of Billy’s personal sponsors to setting up our own team at the beginning of 2022 and now moving into the premier British Superbike Championship class. I’d like to think we’ve quickly become one of the leading, most professional teams in the Superstock class and moving into the Superbike class has always been on my mind.”
“It’s something I knew I wanted to happen at some stage and the new Pathway-specification regulations have fast-forwarded the decision-making process. It makes perfect sense for us to make the move now and with three races and more track time every weekend, we’ll be able to maximise our potential and show what we can do. With Billy, we have the ideal rider and with all his experience I’m show he’ll continue to show his talent whilst also being the perfect foil for Jaimie. He’s impressed greatly in the Supersport class and deserves his opportunity in BSB; we’re sure he’ll make his mark.”