Michael Dunlop Man of the Meeting and Sets New Lap Record.
ONE week on since the Armoy Road Races and the Bayview Hotel Race of Legends, the Armoy Motorcycle Road Racing Club has reflected on a successful meeting.
There were over 120 riders, numerous officials, flag and race marshals, countless volunteers and crowds of road racing fans who all came together to celebrate and ensure there were two days of fantastic road racing.
The racing was second to none with Michael Dunlop securing five wins for the second time in his career at Armoy and he also claimed the Bayview Hotel Race of Legends for the 10th time. The 34-year-old also set a new lap record of 105.179mph in the Roadside Garages Supersport race which his brother William Dunlop had held since 2015. His celebratory lap after the Bayview Hotel Race of Legends will no doubt be remembered for his knocking at the door of The Armada bar in the village and obtaining a pint of beer while still in full leathers.
Friday saw a smoothly operated practice session and two races, the Mermaid Club and Diamond Bar Lightweight Supersport and the Hilton Car Sales Supersport which were all swiftly completed by 6pm.
Saturday saw road racing commence before 9.30 am and the first few races ran according to plan until the Junior Classics where with not just oil on the circuit, heavy rain showers ensured the races were red flagged.
The Chairman and Clerk of the Course, William Munnis, commented on his first race meeting as Clerk of the Course, “I’m absolutely delighted that both days ran as well as they did. You can prepare all you like but when it comes to road racing you are making instant decisions because of the weather, red flags, or any number of scenarios but I was very fortunate in that I had an experienced team around me to assist.
“Extensive planning and preparation always help and I couldn’t have done any of it without my fellow directors or the members of the Club. Many give of their time voluntarily and freely and if people want to question the future of road racing, they should’ve been at Armoy at the weekend to see not only the standard of the racing and riders, but the many, officials, marshals and volunteers who gave of their time, and operated extremely professional to ensure a proficiently run road race as well as keeping to the schedule, along with a good crowd of road racing fans supporting it.
“The feedback has been just great and has come from every quarter of the road racing sector. There were a few challenges though, first the weather, it tested us on Saturday, but we were watching it carefully and without too many upsets to the running order of the races we just kept getting moving forward and managed to run all the races.
Secondly, the bumper crowds not only in attendance but who showed their support by buying the programme packages before the races. Although they came from all corners of the UK, Ireland and beyond for the weekend it was clear that many locals, from Ballybogey to Bushmills and Ballycastle to Ballymena, all made a concerted effort to contribute.
“In the spirit of giving, I’m delighted to announce that over £7k was raised for the races’ designated charity. the Air Ambulance Northern Ireland, with title sponsor, Trevor Kane and the Bayview Hotel also providing teas, coffee and traybakes for a donation which saw a contribution of £970 to the overall total. A big thank you to Trevor and the Bayview Hotel, as without him road racing and charities would all be the worst for it.
“Two other groups I need to thank. The support from other key sponsors, has been just amazing, as always, the Mermaid Club, Diamond Bar, Hilton Car Sales, James McKillop, ian Hickinson & Co, Raymond Hodges and TT Racing, McNally & CO, MJF Construction, Steadplan Sales, Fay Stewart, EMA Building and Civils, Roadside Garages, Causeway Geotech, Park Electrical Services, and Brap Moto, like to say a sincere thank you to each and every one. Finally congratulations to the Supporters Club on their selling and advice to all visiting spectators – I’m not sure they had a minute in our Armoy office but their contribution in both time and money is to be commended.
“Our AGM is next month and once that takes place then we’ll be looking at 2024 and all that it entails.”
The Armoy Road Races event is enabled by funding from Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council. For more information search for ‘AMRRC’ on Facebook or follow on twitter @ArmoyRoadRaces.