Tuesday, 6 April 2010

Real Motorcycle Road Racing v Motorcycle Real Road Racing

Motorcycle Real Road Racing Blog by Barbiegirl Northern Ireland

Warmest congratulations to Alastair Seeley - BSB round one at Brands Hatch - where he deservedly followed up a fourth placing in race one, with a race two rostrum - first time out on the Suzuki Superbike - life in the old guy yet.

A day of exciting racing on one of the oldest race tracks within the UK - Real Motorcycle Road Racing at it's best - close racing, drama - crashes - so many crashes, I lost count - probably missed quite a few as well - not something you want to witness in the first instance, but when high powered motorcycles are being raced around a track at high speeds, there are going to be the inevitable crashes. Rider error, machine failure, and tyre failure - they're all guaranteed to play a part in proceedings, as they did on Easter Monday, but being a purpose built motorsport track since around 1950 - how many deaths did we witness?

Had any of those spectacular crashes occurred on the Motorcycle Real Road Racing tracks of Ireland though - one has to wonder how many inquests would now be pending?

Our notoriously infamous Motorcycle Real Road Racing tracks first came into use around 1921, when motorcycle development was still in it's infancy (Norton, Sunbeam, Scott, Rudge, Velocette, Excelsior, AJS, BSA and Matchless being the leading manufacturers) but unlike Brands Hatch which has been developed over the years - almost as fast as the motorcycle - our dangerous public road tracks have firmly remained in the age of the dinosaurs, barely suitable for normal driving conditions - proven killer tracks for high speed motorcycle racing.

Pictured above left is a 1921 BSA 500cc Works TT Racer. Who in our midst, apart from the Dinosaurs, would dare consider it acceptably safe for a machine such as this to race around the third world public roads of Northern Ireland?

Pictured above is a 996 Ducati, not just a work of art - a fire breathing 200mph Superbike. Who in our midst, apart from the Dinosaurs, would dare consider it acceptably safe for a machine such as this to race around the third world public roads of Northern Ireland?

Along with the dinosaurs that roam them, the killer public road motorcycle race tracks of Northern Ireland are unfit for purpose, and should, as a matter of great urgency, be consigned to the history books - alongside the 'Troubles' - another shameful period during which to many men, women, and children perished at the hands of those who cared not about the lives of the innocents.

The whole world, including the infamous dogs in the streets, are aware of the fact that Motorcycle Real Road Racing is just unacceptably downright dangerous - therefore those who would promote Motorcycle Real Road Racing, are in my opinion, criminally irresponsible, and should be held liable for the inevitable consequences of their actions.

During the course of the John Donnan inquest earlier this year, Tony Harvey, incident officer for the Motorcycle Union of Ireland (Ulster Centre) Limited, who had allegedly conducted a review into the tragic incident, said "It could only be described as a freak accident and a risk competitors accept in the pursuit of their chosen sport" whilst Senior Coroner John Leckey proclaimed it was by the grace of God that the inquest was not dealing with multiple fatalities.

Perhaps Mr. Nelson McCausland MLA, the Minister for Culture, Arts and Leisure - along with those in charge of our Health and Safety Executive - should consider the implications of the foregoing paragraph. If, as has been suggested on numerous occasions, the competitors are aware of the risks involved in their chosen sport, it surely follows that they are also aware of the risks they personally impose to their innocent fans, whether they be man, woman or child - therefore, in the event of a tragedy involving innocent bystanders - logically, the competitor should be held responsible.

On the other hand, should the tragedy have occurred as a result of the unsuitability of the track, then those persons who saw fit to declare the aforementioned track as being fit for purpose, should then be prosecuted. And should machine failure be proved at fault, it follows the person or persons responsible for maintenance would be liable, and with faulty tyres - the manufacturers etc. etc.

Sports persons making claims against fellow participants isn't an altogether uncommon occurrence - indeed if one participant can show that an injury inflicted by a fellow participant was intentional, then that may amount to a criminal offence. Also, the injured party would most likely be able to seek compensation and consequential losses for what would then be assault.

In 1999 for instance, a hockey player was found to have been negligent when he'd followed through too high with his hockey stick and caused an eye injury, and in the previous year, a golfer, whose ball bounced off a tree and struck another person on an adjacent fairway, was found liable due to having played a difficult shot while knowing there was someone on the adjacent fairway. And then there was the amateur footballer, held liable for breaking his opponent's leg in a sliding tackle during a local league match.

Seemingly, the injured person doesn't even have to prove the offending sports person was reckless - as such. Rather that he acted unreasonably in the particular circumstances and out of all proportion to the occasion, as was allegedly the case with the foregoing mentioned incidents. As evidence in such events - the claimant would probably require video recordings of the incident, and any other related footage, plus the recollection of other competitors, spectators and officials.

How many of the fans present at the 2007 Tandragee 100 motorcycle real road race event have come forward with their recollections, photographs, video footage? How many of John Donnan's fellow competitors have come forward - and the 'officials' - actually in my opinion, the 'officials' should be prosecuted.

If you attended the 2007 Tandragee 100, if you were a witness to anything ontoward - and you really are the motorcycle road racing fan you claim to be - the time to stand up and be counted - is NOW!

Save Our Sport From Evil

©2010 Motorcycle RealRoadRacing Blog by Barbiegirl Northern Ireland