Wrist injury hits McGuinness’ North West 200 hopes

The sun is shining as John McGuinness rounds Millbank Corner on his Honda Racing Superbike during Thursday practice at the North West 200. Picture: Rod Neill
The sun is shining as John McGuinness rounds Millbank Corner on his Honda Racing Superbike during Thursday practice at the North West 200. Picture: Rod Neill

Morecambe’s John McGuinness endured a challenging North West 200 as he continues to recover from an injured wrist.

The Honda Racing rider struggled during the hectic, back-to-back qualifying sessions and, after opting out of Thursday evening’s races, all he had to show for his efforts on Saturday was a solitary 12th place finish.

Conditions were perfect in Northern Ireland during both Tuesday and Thursday’s qualifying sessions and the road racing legend battled manfully throughout on his Superbike, Superstock and Supersport machines although the punishing, heavy braking points around the 8.9-mile course forced him to ice his right wrist between sessions.

Nevertheless, he was able to qualify comfortably inside the top 15 in all three classes, ninth in the Supersport class on the Valvoline Racing/Padgetts Honda the best result.

However, he opted out of Thursday evening’s Superstock and Supersport races to rest the wrist in preparation for Saturday’s feature race day but the weather added further problems as the North coast was hit by frequent showers.

McGuinness was forced to pull out of both the Superbike races but he dug deep in the second Supersport race to cross the line in 12th place.

The Morecambe Missile said: “It’s been a really tough few days and nothing like how I’d hoped. I knew it was going to be a big ask to run at the sharp end straightaway but I just wasn’t able to push as hard as I’d have liked and the situation’s worse here due to all the heavy braking points around the course.

“I’ve had a long time out of the saddle and the back-to-back practice sessions took their toll, which was why I decided to sit Thursday evening out to allow the wrist to recover in time for Saturday.”