Road Racing News

Ahead Of Ian Watson Spring Cup Road Races, Road Racing News Speaks To William Dunlop

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Having joined Milwaukee Yamaha for the 2013 season, the talented road racer’s season, gradually got better and better which included, a sensational supersport race 2 win, at the Ulster Grand Prix.

For William 2013 was a challenge, describing it as “hard”, here is William’s honest opinion on how last year went.

“ 2013 was a year of bad luck really, we never had much time with the bikes and with them new to me, we struggled, very little testing at the wet North West meant, we went TT blind. The second half of the year went well for me and we started to get things the way I wanted, it’s a shame as the bikes were very good, I think we would have been very competitive at the North West, had I got the chance. The thing I took most from the year is, it’s hard to let go and let others work at my bikes, people who know more than me, but I am starting, to let go”.

Wins at Ulster Grand Prix, Armoy road races, Walderstown road races, Killalane road races and Southern 100 alongside his first 130 mph lap at the Isle of Man TT meant a pretty good season overall for William last year.

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Photo courtesy of Rod Neill  http://www.bikesportphotos.com/

Now having signed for Tyco Suzuki by TAS, 2014 looks set to be an exciting year for William who is eager to claim his first TT win.

William’s first outing during the 2014 road racing season will be at the Ian Watson Spring cup, at Oliver’s Mount, Scarborough.  Having produced his quickest ever lap time, around the mount at last years’ Gold Cup and recorded top three finishes’ as well, it was interesting to find out how William rated Oliver’s Mount, amongst the road races he competes at.

“ It’s my least favorite track, maybe because I struggle round here, it’s very tight and narrow but I enjoy the event and the people who run it.  It is a fun event for me and results are irrelevant, so it makes it fun.  I always end up doing the end of year event (Gold cup) but this year I’m taking in the first round (Spring cup), it will be good for more track time, as we are running out of time before TT and I have lots of things I haven’t tried out yet”.

Before the North West 200 and Isle of Man TT races, track time is always important for riders and for William, joining a new team it is even more important. William said on how vital the Spring cup and Cookstown 100 would be in terms of gaining more time on Tyco Suzuki by TAS bikes.

“ Cookstown will hopefully be good, as a few bumps and jumps get me familiar with the chassis, as these bikes are completely new to me, this is also important to me for the bike to handle well, on the circuit”.

TAS racing has a fantastic heritage at the Isle of Man TT. They have won two senior TT races and in all, over ten TT race wins. For William Dunlop joining a team with such a strong record around the mountain course will fill him with confidence, ahead of TT 2014.

“Yeah, they are one of the most successful teams in the paddock and are the last team to beat Honda in a superbike race around the mountain track. I have a lot of confidence in the team, they respect and understand me, they, take on what I say and have always tried to accommodate me, as I can be different. It is going to be hard with new everything, but if any team can get me to gel quickly, it is here, I’m very excited for this year”.

To have a realistic chance of winning nowadays at the TT in the superbike races, you have to be lapping at over 130 mph. William in the 2013 senior TT race, on lap 1 lapped at over 130 mph for the first time.  For 2014, the target for him is to lap in the 131 mph bracket.

“ I did one lap at 130mph, it was a big jump straight from 128mph, I did the lap on my own and from a standing start, so it’s all there but I wasn’t fit last year, it was again bad luck. The goal is to do six laps at that speed, I know now I am capable of it and if we have bit of luck, 131mph may be possible”.

For every road racer the ultimate goal is a TT win and for William, who has won at virtually every road race circuit which he has competed at, it’s more important than most.

“ It’s the last one for me, I have many wins at North West 200 and Ulster Grand Prix, this will complete the set and at the moment this is one of the biggest race events in the world, it is a road racers ultimate ambition, it will come,  it is just taking longer, than I thought. “

William is one of the leading road racers in the world and it is always interesting to know a riders opinion on, who they most like competing against, here is William’s thoughts on who he is looking forward to racing against, this year.

“I always looked forward to racing against Palmer and Lougher on the 125 but both have retired, so hopefully someone new comes through.  I think there are a few good guys coming through on the roads; Derek Shiels is someone I like riding with, very clean and straight rides, for the right reasons”.

A, golden opportunity draws near for William Dunlop, in 2014 and achieve a TT win, a truly talented road racer, competing for Tyco Suzuki by TAS.

Road Racing News wishes him every success and looks forward to reporting about William Dunlop, Road Racing Star.

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