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« on: April 03, 2015, 04:19:05 pm »

B.E Racing’s Jamie Hamilton was in upbeat form prior to last night’s KDM Cookstown 100 welcome night, stating: “There’s a lot of talk about who is coming to the event this year but I really do believe, on John Burrows’ bikes, I’m the man to beat.”

Young Hamilton’s opening gambit came during a bit of banter with fellow new kid on the block Dean Harrison, who brought along his immaculately prepared Mar-Train Racing Yamaha YZF-R1M to KDM Hire for a photoshoot.

Harrison, who has only ever made one appearance at Cookstown, added: “Cookstown is going to be like a mini international race with Jamie and myself there; Michael Dunlop, Guy Martin and William Dunlop and the other top runners. But it’s good; that’s what you want to test yourself and it will be a good test to see how this new bike goes.”

Speaking of the new R1M, Harrison explained: “Yeah I love it. There are no bad bikes out there these days, but what I noticed straight away with the Yamaha was the usable mid-range power and how hard it pulled through the range."

Harrison has been testing his new bikes alongside North West 200 and former 250cc Grand Prix winner Jeremy McWilliams: the veteran was shrewdly drafted in by Mar-Train team owner Tim Martin to assist with development on the new R1M and Harrison candidly explained the benefits.

“Yeah having Jeremy along has been good, and the one thing I’ve really noticed with the R1M over other bikes I’ve ridden, is that when you make even the smallest change, you can actually feel it. So yeah the bike is mint and I can’t wait to get riding it at Scarborough then obviously at Cookstown.”

With only three weeks to go until the 2015 KDM Cookstown 100, the organising Club has left no stone unturned, as they look to bring road racing fans a truly international entry for the opening Irish National Road Race of the 2015 season.

With a record 200 entries, 59 of which are newcomers, the line up includes the TYCO BMW Motorrad machinery of Guy Martin and William Dunlop, MD Racing’s Michael Dunlop; the aforementioned duo of Dean Harrison and Jamie Hamilton; Wilson Craig’s new signing Derek McGee; BikeBitsNI new recruit Derek Sheils; BMW’s Stephen Thompson and MJR’s Michael Sweeney.

Jamie Hamilton, as we previously mentioned, is brimming with confidence, and added to his opening statement at last night’s welcome night: “John has the bikes pretty well set up, so we hadn’t too much to change during testing, which meant I was on the pace straight away. Everyone wants to win at Cookstown, but I feel confident that I can try for a win, or maybe even two.”

Having travelled all the way from Mullingar for the welcome night launch, Derek McGee is quietly confident of success. Derek scored three podiums last year, and now onboard the Wilson Craig Hondas, Derek will be looking to open his Cookstown 100 account.

Others worth a mention amongst the star studded entry list, are: James Cowton, Alan Bonner, Andy Lawson, Davy Morgan, James Neesom, Conor Behan and Brian McCormack.

With a record entry, Friday April 24th will see twenty-one practice sessions, and Clerk of Course Francis Everard has promised, if everything is going to plan, he will try and add in more practice where possible.

There will be four races on Friday evening, and 15 on Saturday.

International riders entered for the KDM Cookstown 100 include: Sandor Bitter, Michael Hoffman, David Ansaldi, Dario Cecconi, Eric Goedhart, Michael Dukopil and Veronika Hancokvy.

Maria Costello MBE leads the female charge, along with Veronika Hancokvy, Melissa Kennedy, Yvonne Montgomery and Sarah Boyes – who will race against her Father in the 125cc class at the KDM Cookstown 100.

Club Chairman Kenny Loughran opened last night’s meeting by paying tribute to the late Milton Thom, who passed away last year. Milton was a former President of the Cub, and also a long time sponsor to the event. A minute’s silence was held as a mark of respect to Mr Thom.

Programme of Events

Thursday April 2nd – Press Launch, Royal Hotel, Cookstown from 7.30pm [all welcome]
Thursday April 9th – Liaison Night, Royal Hotel, Cookstown at 7.30pm
Saturday April 18th – Treasure Hunt and BBQ, Sign On Burn Road Car Park from 6pm
Sunday April 19th – Annual Bikers’ Service, Orritor Presbyterian Church at 3.30pm
Tuesday April 21st – Vintage Vehicle Run, Union Street Car Park from 6.30pm
Thursday April 23rd – Classic Bike Run, Union Street Car Park, leaving 7.30pm
Friday April 24th – PRACTICE DAY, Roads Close 12am
Saturday April 25th – RACE DAY, Roads Close 10am
For more information go to
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