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As the bikes prepare to take the track for practice, lets hear from club member James Walsh who is a newcomer to the Cookstown 100.

1. What machine and what classes will you be competing in?

I'm Riding in 2 classes this weekend, Junior and Senior support. My Kawasaki ER 6 Supertwin for junior support and JBW Racing Triumph 675r for senior support. 2. What preparation has gone into this weekend?

Prep wise, well I was testing and racing last week in Oulton Park when my Twin broke it's gearbox so I have been flat out all week so far trying to get a gearbox sorted and into the Er6 so as to get racing with it hopefully. Alot of time watching and learning videos of the circuit with training in my fitness to prepare for it. Getting the bikes prepped, serviced, tyres etc before I head up. 3. What are your thoughts on the Cookstown 100 track?

Well I have never raced in Cookstown before so it is a new experience for me which I am very excited to take on. It looks like a fun, fast, exciting circuit. 4. Have you competed in any race days or pre season testing this year?

My seat time this year has been limited but I have got out on the triumph for an afternoon testing / dusting off the cobwebs in Mondello a few weeks back. And just the weekend gone I was over in the UK at Oulton Park for the 2nd round of the Wirral100 championship. We had testing and 1 Race day on what is an amazing circuit. Unfortunately with the Er6 trouble I was only able to get out on the triumph but I was very happy with that. 5. What are your thoughts on the MCUI insurance situation in the South?

The insurance situation is so disheartening. I'm one of many, many people here in Ireland that over the last couple of months have put in countless hours and a lot of money preparing for what was going to be a busy, fun, exciting season of racing only to be left in the dark with no racing to go ahead here because of the insurance issues. I feel like the insurance industry has too much control in the life of alot of business's, and the claims against really hasn't helped their decision not to continue cover for motorcycle racing in Ireland. Its so sad and frustrating that this has been left to happen and with such short notice and with no clarity on what is going on. So many young and talented racers will be forced to miss out on the sport they love. We know the risks involved and yes it can be a very dangerous sport but we continue to want to race. Now we have to look further afield to get seat time and an even bigger cost to do so. I really hope the MCUI, and the insurance industry can come to a reasonable arrangement and get motorcycle racing back on in the Republic. Everyone involved in our sport loves it, the excitement, the people, the atmosphere. We just hope it can come back. At least there is running in the north again but with so many events south of the border cancelled it's a real shame

West Cork MotorCycle Club wishes all riders a fast and safe weekends racing. Keep 'er lit!

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