‘Road racing has had a horrible year but it will bounce back’
Our man reflects on a hard year for racing, but says it’ll bounce back
It’s been a tough year for road racing, but it will bounce back. It always does. It’s been in this situation before. I can remember back in the 1980s when some people were calling road racing too dangerous, saying the bikes were getting too fast.
Phil Read criticised it, Agostini criticised it and the TT stopped being a world championship race, but it’s still going. When David Jefferies got killed in 2003 the TT was getting a kicking, but people on the outside just don’t understand road racing.
‘WE ALL KNOW WHAT WE ARE DOING AND THE CONSEQUENCES’
At the minute road racing can’t get much bigger than it is, it’s huge. The lap times, the racing, the coverage; everybody still wants to go.
The actual racing this year was fantastic, the North West was incredible, the TT was absolutely insane. Dean Harrison and Peter Hickman were sublime. I’m in awe and gobsmacked at what those boys did this year, especially Hickman on the last lap of the Senior. If you’ve not been in that position before, you will never ever understand it. What we saw from Hickman was historic, a huge milestone. Of course, road racing has its ups and downs, highs and lows. This year has been tough, it just seemed to be one thing after another. So many kicks in the b ***** ks, all good lads, all good people who I have raced with wheel-to-wheel. Nobody deserves to get hurt or worse but we all know what we are doing and we know what the consequences can be.
I know how it works. I’ve lost mates over the years. We are selfish p***ks, we get our helmets back on and get going again. I’d sooner leave a legacy behind and a few quid for my kids than be a miserable f***er!
McGuinness lines up with William Dunlop at the 2017 North West 200
William Dunlop was killed at Skerries this year at the age of just 32