Guy Martin makes rat­tled ri­val a brew


There was no fairy­tale racing come­back for Guy Martin at last week­end’s Tan­dragee 100. Re­turn­ing to the roads for the first time since a huge crash at the Ul­ster Grand Prix in Au­gust 2015, the Lin­colnshire ace crashed out of the Open race on the first lap of the North­ern Ir­ish event on Satur­day.

“It was just a mi­nor ex­cur­sion,” the 35-year-old laughed as he walked away un­harmed af­ter what was his third crash since his re­turn to ac­tion. The Tan­dragee tan­gle, in which he also brought down lo­cal rider Paul Jor­dan at Mar­la­coo cor­ner, fol­lowed hard on the heels of his Mu­gen Shin­den crash dur­ing a re­cent Ja­panese trip to test the elec­tric bike and a shunt at Mon­te­blanco in Spain dur­ing his first ride on Honda’s new Fire­blade.

“I got run into the hedge by an­other rider go­ing into the cor­ner and when I got back out I hit Paul but ev­ery­thing is OK,” Guy said as he shrugged off the in­ci­dent.

His su­per­stock-spec Fire­blade wasn’t dam­aged in the in­ci­dent but Guy was dis­ap­pointed the crash robbed him of the track time he was seek­ing on the new ma­chine be­fore the forth­com­ing North West 200 and Isle of Man TT races.

“I need to get sig­na­tures on my li­cence be­fore I go to the TT,” Guy ex­plained.

“That was sup­posed to be the rea­son I was here but it wasn’t the real rea­son. I re­ally just wanted to ride my bike.”

Guy was re­turn­ing to his road racing roots at the Tan­dragee 100, an event he last com­peted in 12 years ago when he was based in Ire­land and had just be­gun his third sea­son of racing be­tween the hedges. The huge fol­low­ing he now at­tracts, how­ever, forced him to main­tain a low pro­file this time around as he set up camp away from Tan­dragee’s main pad­dock area.

“This is one of the proper road races,” he said af­ter Satur­day’s event.

“It was good to ride the Honda on the roads and I got about 15 laps in dur­ing prac­tice. We still have work to do to get it where I want it to be.”

Guy qual­i­fied in a lowly 17th place for the Open su­per­bike race, be­hind sev­eral 600s and a cou­ple of 750s, af­ter strug­gling to find his feet on the tech­ni­cal track.

‘I got run into the hedge by an­other rider go­ing into the cor­ner’ GUY MARTIN

“I was cov­ered in oil dur­ing the qual­i­fy­ing ses­sion when the bike in front of me blew up and I couldn’t re­ally see where I was go­ing,” the 35-yearold ex­plained.

“I was strug­gling on the lit­tle back road sec­tion in par­tic­u­lar. But then I got out again dur­ing the 600 ses­sion and I took ten sec­onds off my ear­lier time. I was get­ting a bet­ter feel for the bike.”

A se­ri­ous crash forced the or­gan­is­ers to aban­don the meet­ing, deny­ing the Honda star a sec­ond at­tempt of pit­ting his su­per­stock-spec Fire­blade against Wil­liam Dun­lop’s Yamaha R1 and the pre-2017 Suzuki su­per­bike of Derek Sheils.

In­stead Guy caught a late boat back to Eng­land and made a visit to the Scar­bor­ough Spring Cup meet­ing at Oliver’s Mount on Sun­day (see right).

The Lin­colnshire man will re­turn to Ire­land this week­end to com­pete in the cook­stown 100, an event he racedTyco basedCo est squadthe John Satur­day’sTy­ronein new Suzukia Mcguin­nesshaveat just se­ries reg­u­larly Fire­blade­track.a faced­few andof set­back tribu­la­tion­s­mile­sas BMW dis­lo­cat­ed­with­into they was away teama bat­tle­his justTT the pre­vi­ous­from which win­ner.the histo Honda turn­lat- left­the is thumb­spec three­and Martin CBR1000RRweeksin a had crashago crash­e­sand fromSP2 bothat at his Cas­tle Mon­te­blanco.Mcguin­ness su­per­bike- Combe The im­mense2017 ma­chine’spres­sure on late the ar­rival squad has with put less 200 than prac­ticea fort­night­be­gins and un­til just Northa mon­thWest un­til the start of the TT. “The North West 200 will be a means to an end for me,” Guy ex­plained be­fore leav­ing Tan­dragee. “It will be all about get­ting the bike set up right and get­ting me up to speed be­fore we go to the TT.”

First lap back racing and Guy has an un­for­tu­nate com­ing to­gether with lo­cal rider Paul Jor­dan Guy rented a house as an im­promptu pit garage for his Tan­dragee re­turn

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