With the 2015 North West 200 still some ten months away, race director Mervyn Whyte is far from standing still, as the 15-year veteran of the top job in Irish racing looks to the MCE British Superbike championship to recruit a new generation of racers for the event.
Whyte, who brought new TT newcomer record holder Peter Hickman to the event in 2014, has admitted that he already has his eye on talent from the national series.
“I have been talking to Billy McConnell and Tommy Bridewell about their entering the North West and they are both keen to race if we can get a package together.” Whyte said.
With both currently riding for teams with a roadracing presence – Bridewell with Shaun Muir’s Milwaukee Yamaha and McConnell with Smiths’ Triumph, who took their first TT win with Gary Johnson this year – the goal seems well within the astute race organiser’s grasp.
Indeed, McConnell, who visited the North West this year with his team as an deputised mechanic, was blown away by the ultra-fast race, and expressed his wishes at the time to be on the grid in 2015.
The Northern Irish race could well be an extension of the closely fought battle for the British Supersport championship he’s already locked in, with rival Alastair Seeley already a multiple winner at the Triangle circuit.