Tuesday 22 December 2015

2016 Race Dates


As promised, next years race dates have now been confirmed, looks like a busy year, especially April. Shame Southern 100 has moved from its traditional week, straight after Skerries, as it means a few will miss it as it starts the day after Walderstown.

Also Manx Grand Prix starts the same day as Cork. I won't be racing at The Classic TT this year, but will be putting in an entry for Supertwin race during The Manx, so fingers crossed for that.

Still does mean if I don't get an entry I can go to Cork instead.

Friday 1st April Mid Antrim 150
Saturday 2nd April Mid Antrim 150

Friday 22nd April Tandragee 100
Saturday 23rd April Tandragee 100

Friday 29th April Cookstown 100
Saturday 30th April Cookstown 100

Saturday 18th June Kells
Saturday 19th June Kells

Friday 1st July Skerries
Saturday 2th July Skerries

Saturday 9th July Walderstown
Sunday 10th July Walderstown

Monday 11th July – Thursday 14th July Southern 100

Saturday 23rd July Faugheen
Sunday 24th July Faugheen

Friday 29th July Armoy
Saturday 30th July Armoy

Saturday 20th August Manx Grand Prix
Friday 2nd September Manx Grand Prix

Saturday 20th August Cork
Sunday 21st August Cork

Saturday 10th September Killane

Sunday 11th September Killane  

I would like to do as many as possible, but we see how we go, and after the organisation of some of the meetings I will be thinking long and hard about which clubs I race with.

This will probably be my last update this year, so I wish you all a very merry Christmas and a safe and happy New Year.


Tuesday 15 December 2015



Well spent some of last week tinkering with my SV and the first job was to straighten the steering, which on the face of it appeared that the forks had twisted in the yokes.

Having loosened everything off I tried lining the front wheel up with the bike. Sadly this didn't work so decided to drop the forks.

You don't need to be a suspension expert to see why the steering wouldn't line up, yep forks are bent.

So next job will be to strip and repair.

Sadly I didn't get to try and fit the fairing as without the front wheel in would be difficult.

Still I did drop the engine and removed the barrels so that I can replace the piston rings. Whilst the barrels were off I cleaned the pistons up ready for the rebuild on my next visit.

So until next time take care and speak soon


Thursday 3 December 2015


Hi all

I know it's been a while, but not much has been happening at Black Dub HQ over the last few weeks, have been stripping bike down to see what damage was done as a result of my off. Luckily not much more than cosmetics and a few bent bolts.

Hopefully next week I will try and fit my new fairing, so will let you know how that goes.

Today my postman brought me a nice surprise, a CD of photo's from the year by Jimmy Windows. As always many thanks Jimmy, is a nice boost in these cold wet days we are having, to be reminded of the warm sunny days of Summer, well apart from Tandragee that is.

Provisional dates for next year are out, but these have to be confirmed in the next few weeks by MCUI. 

April is looking busy with 3 races, Mid Antrim kicking the season off on 2nd April.

I will of course post up dates as soon as they are confirmed. Until then enjoy the pictures.

Hope you enjoy the photo's as much as I did posing for them.


Friday 9 October 2015

Championship Update

Hi all

Well it's been a few weeks since Killalane and am feeling a lot better after my off. Leg, arm and finger still ache, but getting easier.

I've also had time to sort some bits ready for a fixing session at the end of the month. Well truth be told I've been calling in favours to get stuff done. Stuart has very kindly had my engine case repaired and  Rob machined a replacement part for my front brake master cylinder, so many thanks guys, you're both stars.

I've not just been sitting around, I too have been in the garage turning some bits on my lathe, so will have new footpegs and crash bung to fit.

I also have a new front fairing thanks to my lovely Kyra, who saw it for sale just down the road from her on Nosey Book. So will be trying to fit that whilst there too, but this will take some new brackets as it's a GSXR fairing, but this is a common modification  for SV's so hope it won't be too painful.

More good news. I had a look at the MCUI Championship standings for the end of the season and I finished the Supertwin championship in a very creditable 12th place, which I was more than happy with, so all in all a very good season when you think I had a second place at Cookstown and personal best laps, between 2 and 8 seconds improvement, at every circuit I visited this year. Just a shame April is so far away.

Still I have plenty to do so shouldn't complain.

Until next time


Thursday 17 September 2015


No sooner than the season starts and it's to Killalane,and the last meeting of the year, is upon us.

So, to make it a bit more special I decided to take my 600 out for a spin as it was only sitting doing nothing. Luckily I got a last minute entry for it and John McCann, he of Moto Merchants fame and all round star, kindly offered to transport her down for me.

I had a few days before racing to check her over and do a few odd jobs on all the bikes before we set off.

We arrived safe and sound on Friday evening and awoke to a lovely dry and sunny day for practice.

I haven’t ridden the 600 for a while so luckily we were given 3 extra practice laps, which was just as well as the 600 wouldn’t pull over 10k revs. James, my pit crew for the weekend, and I lifted the tank to reveal a dodgy fuel hose, which we replaced and seemed to work.

The 650 went well in both practices but sadly the battery went flat on the 400. As this runs a system which doesn’t charge the battery as she runs, meant she wouldn’t rev out, so missed out on getting a good time on her.

Still, success with the 600 and the fuel hose repair worked and she went really well.

We awoke to sunny dry weather again on Sunday and was really looking forward to racing on one of my favourite tracks.

First up was the 600. I started from the back of the grid and was staying with the pack until she coughed and spluttered to a halt, which was down to my fuel calculations.

I always run with just enough petrol in the tank as a litre of fuel weighs approximately 1kg. Now to save that sort of weight normally takes some doing, so the easy way is not to take petrol for a ride.

Two things lead to me running out. Firstly we were red flagged, so we did another 2 warm up laps to get some heat back into our tyres and secondly I was working on the fact the circuit was 1.3 miles shorter than it actually was. Hands up my mistake.

Oh well it was now off out on the 400.

Due to me not finishing practice I once again started from the back of the grid. Still I got a good start and had a great race with Robert Cairns. Neither of us could loose the other and we had a great race until the red flags came out again.

They were talking about us doing two more warm up laps and a 3 lap race, once the incident had been cleared. All of us expressed our concerns over lack of fuel, and the race was called as a result. I was pleased to find out that despite starting last I worked my way up to 14th when the flag came out. I also improved my best lap time from last year by 5 seconds, so was very pleased with that.

Next up was the Supertwin race on my 650. I lined up with John and we had a race long dice, each of us taking the lead from one another at least 3 times, a real cracker of a race. I managed to get passed John and set off after the guy in front, who I got as we crossed the line. I then set off and quickly overtook the guy in front of him, who we’d be gaining on all race. It was only after I over took the next two guys I saw people clapping and then realised that I’d missed the finish flag and we were on our slowing down lap. I was told later from people watching, they could see I hadn’t seen the flag as was still going for it. Trouble is that when racing, and especially when you are that close to the guy in front, all your attention is how can you get passed him so you tend not to focus on the surroundings.

I had one race to recover and get my breath back before I was off out again, so a quick drink and a visor clean and I was back out on the 650.

I started from 9th on the grid and got a decent start, and once again ensued in a battle with John.

All was going well until I tipped into a set of fast right handers, when out of the corner of my eye I saw the front wheel of another bike. I felt us touch and remembered thinking ‘this is going to hurt’. Next thing I knew I woke up in a ditch being tendered to by a travelling marshal. I remembered not feeling any pain, apart from my legs felt as if they’d been used as a wishbone. After that the next thing I recall is being checked over by a Doctor in an ambulance. After about an hour I was released from the medical team, and so set off home.

Needless to say I ached when I woke up the next morning and when I tried to stand up fell back down again as I had no balance, so Monday was spent at various Doctors and A&E’s. Eventually I was given the all clear and was told I was suffering from a tear to my inner ear, nothing worse.

I know how lucky I was as the corner is taken at about 100mph and there is a grass verge, about 2 foot wide, then you’re down a ditch, so could’ve been far, far worse than being knocked out for an hour and a few aching muscles. Luckily I was wearing some great gear, which I think helped lessen my injuries, so will be replacing them with like for like before next year.

My thoughts go out to the other guy involved, Donnacha Healy, who suffered several broken bones and had to undergo an operation on his back, hope you get well soon.

As you can see from the pictures, my bike appears to have got off lightly as well. I’ve had a look and can’t see any major damage, but will have a better look next time I’m over.

So all in all not a bad weekend race wise with some good racing and improved times, a good way to end the season, April and Cookstown seems too far away.

I’d like to thank all those that helped me after my off, I owe you all. Thanks also to all those that sent well wishes, it was nice to know people were watching.

I’ve had a great season, improving my times at each circuit I’ve been too, and of course not forgetting a trophy and prize money at Cookstown at the beginning of the season.

The Winter will hopefully be spent repairing and refreshing the 650, as well as a few little jobs on the 400, so keep your eyes peeled for updates on my, now, Winter project, rebuilding the 650.

Until then

Tuesday 8 September 2015

Quick Killalane Update

Hi all
As some of you already know, Killalane didn't quite go to plan and I ended the season in the back of an ambulance.
Luckily it was all precautionary and the worst of it being my balance has been effected due to a bash on the head.
Am a bit sore, but otherwise fine.
Thanks to all of you who have sent well wishes and as soon as I'm back home will give you a full update, including pictures of what remains of my Supertwin, which I've not really looked at yet but fear may cause a relapse in my condition.
Speak soon
Cheers Stuart

Thursday 27 August 2015


Hi all

Well no sooner than it starts, and it's nearly all over, yes it's Killalane in two weekends time, which sadly marks the end of another road racing season.

Still, am not getting too down as Killalane is one of my favourite circuits, and there is a bonus in that I'm taking 3 bikes with me.

Yes I've dusted off my 600 and so will be taking that out for a run round.

I'm doing this for a couple of reasons, one that it's not being used and also being the last race of the season, might as well make the most of it.

It could be a bit of a work up as means I'm entered in 4 races in one day, hopefully I will be up to it, as well as my pit crew.

The eagled eyed amongst you may recognise the chap on the left of the poster for this years event? I was really chuffed when I saw this, hope to get a couple whilst over there.

So fingers crossed for a good weekend and will let you know how it all goes as soon as I can.

Until then,


Saturday 8 August 2015

Armoy TV Coverage

Hi all 

Just a reminder that there is coverage of the recent Armoy road races on Channel 4 tomorrow, Sunday 9th August at 7:30am, and I may well be on there.

I've heard from a couple of people that I've also appeared in the coverage of Southern 100 which has been shown on Eurosport, so another to look out for.

Nice to be getting some coverage, for both road racing in general and me, especially if there are any potential sponsors out there wishing to help, you could have your name on national TV.

Hope you enjoy the show, and if you would like to help fund my racing please feel free to contact me.


Sunday 2 August 2015

Armoy Report

Hi all

Well with just over a week to wait it didn’t take long until I was heading back to Northern Ireland to race at Armoy, a race I’ve only done once before, back in 2013. I watched a few on board videos beforehand just to refresh my memory as to where the circuit went.

Luckily we had a day to finish getting the bikes ready before we set off on Friday morning.

So on Thursday I finally got to fit some GSXR callipers to my 400. I’d been told on ZXR World Forum that these were an easy fit and gave loads more stopping power, so I bought a set, way back in 2013. For long term readers you may recall my first attempt to fit these failed as they felt spongy, no matter how much we bled them.

Over last Winter I tried again with another master cylinder, but with no success. My one last hope was a Brembo master cylinder, however when I went to fit it at Southern 100 I found I had the wrong banjo bolt to connect the brake lines to it. Luckily on the Thursday at the Southern I bought one off the spares guys in the paddock.

So with all the correct bits we set about assembling and bleeding them, which we did in no time at all. Now the biggest problem was not forgetting I had different brakes when I went out to practice.

We were told that Fridays weather wasn’t going to be great, but woke to glorious weather, which luckily didn’t alter all day.

With signing on etc done I went out to practice on the Supertwin first. This I took really easily as was just getting back into where the circuit went. It was also the first chance I had to try the new throttle bodies I had fitted before the very wet Southern 100. They felt a whole lot better and the bike was running beautifully.

Next was the turn of the 400, which again went without drama, and was feeling more confident as the laps ticked down.

One more session on the 650 and it was time to pack up and head home for the evening.

Saturday dawned and was once again a beautiful day.

We set up and I went to the riders briefing and signing on, whilst Steve and Josh got the bikes checked.

It turns out that once again I hadn’t managed to qualify on the 650. The simple reason being that for a 27 grid field, the organising club accepted 45 entries, so there were a lot of very disappointed riders.

I know that road racing is enjoying huge popularity at the moment, but I for one am getting sick of clubs claiming the meeting is so heavily over subscribed. Especially as it is down to them to limit the number of entries accepted.

Still onwards and upwards, and it was off to race the 400, albeit in race 9 so a fair amount of sitting around not doing much.

I’d qualified 23rd out of 27 which was ok, but even as soon as the lights went out I started to move up the field.

I caught number 42 and was pleased that I passed him with ease, especially as last year he seemed to be streets ahead of me, so makes me feel I’m moving in the right direction and the racer in me is still going strong.

My lead was short lived after I put the brakes on for the last corner, way too early, causing me to release the brakes and ride up to the corner, at which point Brian, number 42, nipped passed me.  

The new brakes were something else, I’d taken it easy to bed them in during practice but was now using them in anger during the race. On every lap, as I came into Armoy village I could hear the back end skipping under heavy braking, the back had gone that light. I was making up loads of space on people that were in front and used them to great advantage as I got up the inside of Davy Black again into Armoy village. I was just driving out of the corner when the red flags, indicating the race had been stopped, came out.

A rider had come off at the very dangerous Church Bends and was airlifted to hospital. Thankfully he is reported as being on the mend now.

Whilst we were waiting to be let back round to the pits, a guy noticed that the bracket holding my exhaust on had snapped. Not sure what exhausts have against me at the moment, having fixed the supertwins, its’ the turn of the 400 to break.

The result was called at the end of the 4 laps and I finished 14th which I was very happy with, especially as I had posted a fastest time 8 seconds faster than my previous best two years ago. Better still I was back racing with guys who I hadn’t raced with for a while. Wish I’d done the brakes earlier.

So with Armoy done I now have to wait until Killalane 5th September, and it can’t come soon enough, why didn’t I enter The Ulster GP?.

One last bit of news, Armoy is due to be shown on Channel 4 Sunday 9th August at 0730, so keep your eyes open for that one.    

So until next time.



Saturday 18 July 2015

Southern 100

Upon arrival on The Island we set about fitting some new throttle bodies to the Supertwin to increase power. To get these set up properly we went to see Slick Performance who ran the bike up on his Dyno. Whilst this was being done we had to source a new rear wet tyre as forecast wasn’t looking grand for practice.

Sure enough practice was a very wet affair, but after Tandragee earlier in the year was quite comfortable in the tricky conditions, ending practice 8th fastest on the 400. Sadly the weather deteriorated and cancelled after the 400’s, so no 650 practice.

Tuesday dawned and the weather hadn’t improved, so we changed wheels yet again, in fairness we are getting quite good at this now.

Practice was wet and after leaving the holding area and the back end tried to come around and meet the front, I remembered I had a new tyre on the back, so took it easy for a couple of laps.

On the fourth lap my exhaust came loose and started making a real racket. This happened on the approach to Cross Four Ways, where I knew Ian, a marshal I know, was watching, so wondered if he loosened it, as he like the sound of it with no can on.

When I checked the practice times, it became apparent that I hadn’t qualified the 650, and no amount of pleading would change the organisers minds. So we packed up the 650 and that was that for it’s week.

Better news on the 400 though, and I qualified 13th fastest for our first race on Wednesday evening.  

The lights went out for the first race and the bike directly in front of me snapped his chain and shot it out the back like a spear. I went to the right to avoid it and so did the rider to my left, which nearly ran me onto the grass, losing any advantage of starting from 13th.

After regaining my composure I set off after the others but soon realised I was going to have to treat this race a practice session, being the first time out in the dry. I just couldn’t get any rhythm and was mucking up gear changes all over the place, so just tried to work out where I was going wrong. It came as no surprise after the race that I’d not got anywhere near my previous personal best lap, so headed home and hope for a better day on Thursday.

Thursday was another dry hot day so did a couple of little jobs and got the bike checked over before the race.

I got a much better start, and had nothing thrown at me this time, so got my head down and went for it. I felt much more with it and had several good dices, including waving to Jez Hill as he bogged down whilst trying to overtake me. It was like a red rag to a bull and he was soon passed. After this I had a good race with Chris McGann on a 125. Due to the way a 125 makes it’s power I could overtake him on the fast bits but he could carry much more corner speed, so just waited for him to come passed at every corner, which he did, but was good fun.

I finished a respectable 15th and found out that I’d gone two seconds quicker than I had done before around the Billown Circuit, which was a good way to end what had been a frustrating week.

 Hope you enjoy these cracking photo's from John at Manannan Images, many thanks John

Another finishers medal to add to the collection

It’s only a few days and we are back over to Northern Ireland for the race of legends at Armoy, all being well.

So until then, take care and speak soon

Skerries Report

Hi all

Apologies for the delay in updating site but it’s been a busy old couple of weeks.

First off we were over to Skerries, so after a day of tinkering we set off South from our Northern Ireland base.

We awoke to a slightly damp Friday morning, however it soon dried and I was out for practice on the 400. It was the first time I’ve really been out on the 400 due to various problems, both mechanical and weather, and it felt really good.

So good in fact I knocked 3 seconds of my fastest ever time around the circuit, so was really pleased with that.

Sadly practice came to a halt after an accident, which cost Dr John Hinds his life.

Dr. John was a travelling Doctor who attended road race meetings both North and South and was certainly no slouch when it came to riding a bike.  Luckily I never met him in a professional capacity, but know others who have, and wouldn’t be here today if it were not for him. He will be greatly missed and was very upsetting to hear this terrible news.

Saturday was again another lovely day and the practice sessions missed on Friday were first out. As I’d qualified I didn’t bother taking my 650 out as time was tight to get all those out that hadn’t practiced.

My first race was on the 650 and got an ok start. John McCann, my race buddy got a better start but I managed to get passed him into the second corner. I then set off after the next rider and got passed him, which I then did to the next rider also.

The bike felt really good and to be able to pass then move to the next person and pass them was a very good feeling. John commented after that even if the race was 20 laps long there was no way he would catch me as I appeared to be on a mission.

Next up was the 400 and this also went well, improving my personal best by a further 2 seconds faster, so 5 seconds faster in total, than last year. It was commented on that you could see, even from trackside, that the 400 power had improved. 

It was back to the 650 for the last race of the day and once again went well. Sadly I haven’t seen any times for the 650 race as not enough timing sheets were printed, so will have to wait for the website to be updated.

For those who have seen photo’s of my bike at Skerries you may well have seen a new sponsor on the fairing. This is Moto Merchants in Armagh, run by my good friend John McCann, so many thanks to John for his support.

With Skerries all done and dusted it was off to The Isle Of Man for the Southern 100.

Friday 26 June 2015

Busy Week Ahead

Hi all

Well after what seems like forever, racing is back on for me.

On Wednesday I head over to Northern Ireland and then head south to Skerries, which is held on Friday and Saturday. Straight after racing I head North again and on Sunday head to Isle Of Man for Southern 100.

It's their diamond Jubilee this year, and am sure it will be a great show.

All being well I am fitting some bigger throttle bodies to my SV, and then will be taking the bike to Slick Tuning on the Island to get him to remap it for the new throttle bodies, which will hopefully give me a bit more power, fingers crossed.

I really enjoy The Southern, so hope it goes well this year.

I will of course try and keep you updated with goings on, so until then, take care.


Tuesday 26 May 2015


Hi all

Well after the disappointment of not getting an entry into this years Classic TT, as promised I've entered another race.

As you've probably guessed it's Armoy, which is on 24th & 25th July this year.

Fingers crossed my entry will be accepted, but will update you when I receive confirmation.

Until then, take care


Friday 22 May 2015

Classic TT

Hi all

After months of waiting I've found out I won't be racing at the Classic TT this year as my entry application was unsuccessful.

Am absolutely gutted that I won't be there as was looking forward to building on what we achieved last year.

Keep your eyes peeled on my page though as may be adding some other races to my calender.

Thanks to all those that have offered condolences and hope to see some of you at one of my other meetings.


Tuesday 12 May 2015

Manx Grand Prix

Hi all

Just been emailed to tell me that my application to race in the Supertwin race at this years Manx, has been unsuccessful.
Gutted as was hopeful of an entry this year, and having enjoyed the Classic so much last year, really wanted to have two bikes this year.

I haven't yet heard about my Classic entry for this year, so fingers crossed, and will let you know as soon as I do.

Thursday 7 May 2015

Tandragee Race Report

Hi all

After last weeks success at Cookstown I couldn’t wait for Tandragee to see if we could continue my good start to the season.

There wasn’t much in the way of jobs to be done to the bikes in the days between, the most important was to repair the Supertwin belly pan as a hole had been burnt through it by the exhaust. Luckily I know a very good body repair and paint sprayer, so thanks to Adrian for a superb job, as always.

We arrived at Tandragee on Friday ready for practice, and the paddock was such a state we were towed in by a tractor.

First out was the Supertwin and after two laps noticed a slight stutter from the engine as I opened the throttle. It got to the point that I pulled in as couldn’t clear it.

Next I was out on the 400. I was really looking forward to seeing if all my hard work over the Winter had paid off. The engine felt great, strong and solid and was really enjoying the ride. I looked down at my foot as if felt like it slipped on the footpeg. Sure enough there was oil everywhere, so pulled in.

The rear of the bike was a mess, on the plus side it won’t rust anytime soon as is now well protected. Steve studiously cleaned her up and we thought the leak was coming from the water pump seal, so removed this and made sure we had a good seal. Sadly only having one practice for this bike we would have to wait for race day to see if our efforts worked.

On the plus side even though I only did two laps on the 400 I had managed to knock 3 seconds off my previous fastest lap around the circuit, so was hopeful for race day of an even better time.

Next I was out on the Supertwin again. Sadly this was short lived as the electrical problem was still there, despite changing the battery, which we thought was the cause, so I had to pull in again.

Back at the van we found that the fault was linked to the coil so changed the spark plugs and cleaned all the connectors up, which did the job as didn’t suffer during the race.

We had been keeping a close eye on the weather all week and our fears were confirmed come race day, it was wet, very wet,in fact it was the wettest I've ever raced in.

With wets fitted I was out on the Supertwin. I got away well and started reeling the guy in front of me in and after watching to see where was good to overtake, I got passed him. Around the next corner red flags were being shown after an incident. Luckily there were no serious injuries, it was just stopped to allow the marshals to clear up.

So after the restart I managed to overtake the same guy, we started in our original grid position,  a lot quicker as knew from the previous lap where to overtake, I then started to hunt the next guy down. I was soon behind him and managed to get passed with ease. I got my head down and tried to settle into a rhythm. I’ve never raced in such wet conditions and surprised myself as to how much you can get away with on full wets.

Coming into the last but one corner, the last guy I overtook came up alongside me. I thought he was way back, but sadly not, so got my head down and went for it, as he didn’t get passed me. I tried to ride a very defensive line into the last corner but sadly was pipped to the finish line by about half a bike, still was a cracking race.

I caught up with the rider later, and he said his head had gone, when I overtook, as he didn’t like the conditions. He then told me that he thought that as I was doing it, so could he, so just tucked in behind me and let me lead. This is always a good ploy in the wet as you can gauge how wet it is by how the bike in front is handling. The old racing adage, is that you only have to lead over the line on one lap to win.

After trying to get warm it was out on the 400. She was warmed up nicely and no signs of leaks so headed off to the grid. I looked down to see if all was ok and saw the belly pan full of oil, so our fix had not worked and it was back to the pits for me.

We found out that the main gear box seal was the culprit, and with no spare that was that for the 400. Still one more race to go on the Supertwin.

I lined up next to 113 again, hoping to make up for missing out to him in the last race.

We both got good starts and started a 4 lap dice between us. It was a great race and we both thoroughly enjoyed it. I followed for most of the race but did come alongside him a couple of times until I picked my place to overtake him. Sadly in doing this I was off line for the next corner, leaving the door open for him to sneak passed and holding the position until we crossed the line.

It was an excellent race and great fun, despite the weather, but I did surprise myself how quick I could run in such appalling conditions.

Just to give you an idea of just how wet it was

It was a shame that I haven’t managed to race the 400 this time, but fingers crossed she will be ready for Skerries in July. Still I’ve had a great few races on the Supertwin and hope can continue to do so next time out.

Until next time, take it easy


Wednesday 29 April 2015

Cookstown Race Report

Hi all

Well at long last the first race was here so we set off for Liverpool to catch the ferry to Belfast. Not long after setting off we found one of the front tyres on the van had deformed over the Winter. We had to stop and change it as if it had blown out then we would've been in all sorts of trouble.
We made it safely to the ferry and thanks to Steve for phoning ahead as otherwise we wouldn't have got on.
After spending Thursday settling in we dropped the van off at the paddock and unlike other years we picked where to park as we arrived so early.
Friday was practice and was a very damp affair. Still it was good as was feeling a bit rusty, so was nice to ease into it.
Both bikes went well and apart from the silencer coming loose all went well.
Am not too surprised as after being stripped during the winter things need a run out to settle in.
We were meant to race Saturday evening but for some reason the races were put back to Saturday morning.
Saturday was still damp but we were told that it was going to dry as the day went on.
I was told I was out in the first race, but after being black flagged after the first lap, I was told this was wrong and was out in the second race.
With the track drying but no chance to change tyres I went out on wets.
The flag was raised and away we went. I got a good start and was second into the first corner.
As the race settled down I had several good dices and I finally crossed the line in 5th place.
Because this was a combined race I had in fact finished second in the Junior Support class, as such was presented with a trophy and prize money, which came as a lovely surprise.            

I was only out in one other race later on Saturday and the roads had completely dried by that stage, which was good.
Again I got a good start and felt more comfortable on my supertwin.
Sadly I couldn't replicate my earlier success, but still had a great race.
I now have a few days just checking the bikes over in readiness for the next race at Tandragee this weekend.
Hopefully I will continue to make good progress, as really liked the feeling of finishing so well.
So until next time, wish me luck.

Cheers Stuart

Wednesday 15 April 2015

More Power!

Hi all

Well after spending nearly every spare moment from when I brought the bikes back last November it was finally time to take my 400 to be put on the dyno after my Winter rebuild.

I was quite nervous about this as it was only the second race engine which I've rebuilt. Plus there were a few unknowns as I'd put a new head on it and also a different set of barrels. Coupled with fitting a ram air box, and all that went with that I wasn't sure what was going to happen.

I dropped the bike off with Double Take Motorcyles in Southampton, and waited for the phone to ring.

I didn't have to wait long as they phoned the next day. My first thoughts were the engine had blown as I'd asked them to put it through a few heat cycles as hadn't been able to run it in, in the usual fashion.

So when I asked what was up I was surprised to hear that she was ready for collection.

So that was one worry dealt with, now the next, had my work and efforts been worth it?

To re cap, when she was tested before she was making 54bhp, 10 down on a standard road bike.

After I was told what they had changed I had to ask, 'what is she putting out?'

'Just over 70bhp' was the reply.

I couldn't believe my ears, 16 more hp than I'd had, that will do very nicely.

This should put me on a level playing field with those racing around me, as 70 is about what a race bike, that hasn't had serious amounts of money spent on it, should be putting out.

I still can't believe that I managed to find 16hp and can't wait to see how she goes.

Talking of which, I don't have long to wait now as next week I will be on the ferry to Belfast as the first race is 24th & 25th April at Cookstown.

Fingers crossed it will be a good one.

Hopefully I will be able to update you as to how I get on.

Speak soon


Saturday 21 March 2015

Sponsorship Required

I know a few of you have expressed an interest in providing some form of sponsorship to help out with my racing. With preparation for the 2015 season getting underway, now is the time for you to get involved. In return you can have yours, or your company name on my bike.

There is potential for your name to be seen by a considerable audience.   As well as updates on my own web site, which has a large number of followers, I  also regularly appear on other road racing websites. In addition, I have also appeared in various bike magazines, both here and  in Ireland.

Any assistance, large or small, would be greatly appreciate.

Typical costs range from £25 for a seasons worth of oil filters, through £300 for a set of tyres,  up to £400 to rebuild and race prepare an engine.

In return I will let you know what you have bought for the bike and of course display your name on the side of my bikes.

I will also hold a draw for some Black Dub goodies later in the season.

So if you would like to help then please drop me a line at racing@blackdub.co.uk

Thanks for your help