From express courier to Superbike race, Dan steps up to BSB for 2022
A long-term plan to bring a young motorcycle racer up to British Superbike Championship level has come to fruition this year, as Dan Jones steps up to the premier class for 2022. The 20-year-old Welshman, who works as a courier when not on the racetrack, will be contesting the 11-round championship with the PR Racing team.
Having ridden since the age of seven, Dan has been climbing the racing ranks for the past 10 years. He honed his talent in various series, including the Red Bull MotoGP Rookies Cup, the Junior World Championships and the British Moto3 Championship, and already has four British titles under his belt.
The past two seasons have seen Dan further prove his potential with a strong performance in the GP2 category of the British Supersport Championship. In 2021, he secured seven front row starts, taking seven podiums to finish fourth overall for the PR iForce Lloyd and Jones team.
Dan is also no stranger to speed and precision off the track, through his work as a courier for specialist delivery company, Mailbox Express. His participation in GP2 was part of a three-year plan named “Project 44”, masterminded by his boss and long time sponsor, Darren Shaw. Together with the support of KT Motorsport, the aim was to get Dan into BSB by 2023.
Such is the young rider’s talent and determination; the plan has succeeded in its goal one year early. A five-day test in Spain in late 2021 proved that Dan is more than ready to climb aboard the BMW S1000RR superbike and begin competing at the highest level of British motorcycle racing.
Dan will remain with PR Racing team, the same outfit for which he has ridden for the last two years. The official launch took place at Bowker BMW in Preston this weekend, with Dan’s new Superbike team-mate Dan Linfoot and Fraser Rogers also in attendance. The team will take part in the official British Superbike Championship pre-season tests ahead of the first round at Snetterton on 27/28 March.
“This feels like it’s been a long time coming and now the opportunity is here, I am very, very excited. I’m going to grasp it with both hands and really give it a go. The test in Spain was really positive and I came on leaps and bounds on the BMW in the five days we were there. It was probably one of the best tests I’ve ever had and I was amazed at how good the bike is. As a result, we’ve ended up on the superbike a year earlier than planned.
There are no major expectations from any of my sponsors or the team, which is always nice for a rider. I’m going into the year with no pressure on my shoulders and the opportunity to learn. I’m lucky enough to have an experienced team-mate, who I can learn a lot from. My crew chief, Kev, has worked in superbikes a lot, so I can also tap into his knowledge and learn and improve as we go. My personal goal is to be in the points by the end of the season. It’s a very strong grid this year, but if I can look at the championship standings and have points by my name, I’ll be happy.”
Darren Shaw, Mailbox Express
“I’ve had faith in Dan for a long time and I knew he would make it into the Superbike class. He’s a talented rider, but more than that, he has the determination and dedication to succeed. He puts in the work and he gets results in return. The fact that we are heading to the superbike class a year earlier than planned is of course brilliant, but it’s not too much of a surprise for me. I’m looking forward to seeing what Dan can achieve and watching him develop as a racer this season. No pressure from us though! This is an opportunity for him to learn and lay the foundations for a successful career in the British Superbike Championship.”