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10th Feb 2023

All motorcycle road racing in Northern Ireland has been cancelled for 2023

Stephen Porzio

It is said to be a massive blow to tourism.

All motorcycle road racing, short circuit racing and trials set to take place in Northern Ireland this year have been cancelled.

This comes after emergency meetings in recent days in which the organising clubs decided that the events were impossible to run on account of rising insurance costs.

In a statement, Motorcycle Union of Ireland (Ulster Centre) chairman John Dillon said:

“The relevant representatives gave their clubs’ views on their ability to meet the proposed insurance costs, and fees proposed, as well as any further viable options that may result in the affordability to run events this year.

“The consensus was that the costs proposed were, at this time, unsustainable for most clubs in order to provide the required public liability cover to run our planned events.

“The MCUI (UC) will, however, continue to pursue all options for the provision of public liability insurance, should they arise in the near future.”

Northern Ireland’s biggest outdoor sporting event, the North West 200, has been cancelled, along with the Armoy Race of Legends, the Cookstown 100, the Tandragee 100, the Sunflower trophy at Bishopscourt, the Ulster Grand Prix and the Ulster Superbike Championship.

Meanwhile, Motocross has not been impacted.

According to the BBC, quoted costs this year for public liability insurance – which covers injury to people and damage to property – have tripled, rising to over £400,000.

The cancellations are said to be a devastating blow to motorcycling, as well as to tourism.

The BBC reports that the organisers of last year’s North West 200 claimed that £17 million was spent in the local economy.

Meanwhile, the total estimated visitor attendance at the event for the week was 195,000.

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