BRADFORD’S reigning Isle of Man TT Senior race winner Dean Harrison will return to the event this year in the new-look DAO Racing team.

Formerly known as Silicone Engineering Racing, the team is set to retain the same line-up of personnel as before and will continue to be run out of its Cumbria workshop under team manager Jonny Bagnall.

DAO Racing is owned by Isle of Man-based Clarissa Beadman and Sommai Nantakoon and the team will once again contest the major road races and the British Superbike Championship, with further details of the team’s full plans for 2022 set to be unveiled soon.

Reflecting on the rebrand, Harrison said: “It’s an exciting time because it offers me and the team something a bit different. It’s just great to know that everyone is keeping going because you never know what is going to happen in this climate.

“Silicone was sold, but thankfully our manager already owned a company in the Isle of Man called Dao Holdings which now means that Dao will be the main sponsor for our bikes.

“It sounds like a big change but it’s far from that. The only parts which are being changed are the sponsors, the name of the group and the branding, I.E colours on the bike.

“But the team is staying the same, so in my eyes that is a huge positive.

Harrison added: “It was vitally important that we kept the team together because continuity is key to success in this sport.

“Hopefully we can continue with the same success as we experienced under the Silicone name.”

The Bradford speedster is set to return to the Isle of Man TT in six months’ time as he looks to secure his fourth title, 2019 being the last of those.

And Harrison is thrilled with the prospect of returning to the course.

He said: “I cannot wait to return to the Isle of White because I haven’t been there for three years now. It will be great to get rolling. Hopefully the sun is shining and we can have a great fortnight away.

“The goal would be to claim my fourth title there, but I think it will take me a bit of time to get into the swing of things over there because I have been away for so long. It’s just about getting up to speed as soon as we can.”

Over the next couple of months, starting February 4 (Bingley Arts Centre), Harrison will be touring the country with a number of biking greats to share his memories of the sport he loves.

Tickets are priced at £25 (general entry) for spectators wishing to attend, via the website.

Harrison said: “We are touring the country doing a number of chat shows, which will see us talk about our racing experiences over the years. We are expecting between 200 and 300 people at each event and it’s something I’m really looking forward to.

“It’s massively important that we give back to the fans and them show them that we care because without them, the sport wouldn’t be what it is today.

"It's going to be a great couple of months meeting all the fans."