Jeremy McWilliams: In his own words
Sweetandsour: What are you going to do about bikes for Jerez?… I’ve heard they’ve gone walkies…?
JeremyMcWilliams: Well it’ll be an easy weekend then if that’s right! At least mine haven’t been crashed, so when they do arrive we’ll be able to go straight out, and we’ve got our Jerez set-up so we’ll be able to go straight out. But I’d rather be putting my feet up somewhere like Malaga if they don’t!
Uel: How do you see the reliability of the Proton in racing conditions versus test conditions?
JeremyMcWilliams: Yeah, it was strange that we broke a gear selector in Welkom. We’d had very, very few breakdowns in testing. Maybe it was just the nature of the circuit. It was very, very hard on machinery so fingers crossed it won’t happen any more
Mrsticky: will you be involved in any of protons 4 stoke plans?
JeremyMcWilliams: Sincerely hope so. Because it’s obvious that that is the direction to go. You know, the team are already looking at different options and I can only hope that if I’m the rider that’s getting the points, then I can only hope to be chosen
Jimmy: Will you get a chance to test the Proton 4-stroke before the end of the season?
JeremyMcWilliams: Highly unlikely…I think they’ve only got drawings of it now. They explained how difficult it is to produce an engine from the ground up and it’s not an overnight, or even overseason, possibility
Nick: Who do you see as our next best hope in MotoGP…How do you rate the likes of Chas Davies and Leon Haslam?
JeremyMcWilliams: Chaz has got a bright future ahead of him. He’s hitting at the right time. Leon’s still very young, which I keep forgetting! And of course he can only get better. But that kid from Australia, that we’ve sort of adopted, Casey Stoner He seems the greatest talent to emerge since Valentino. But he just needs to calm down a little bit. But that’s good coming from me!!!!
Anne: What’s the best way to get into pro racing?
JeremyMcWilliams: It’s sort of by accident. You’ve got to be an obvious talent and you’ve got to be standing in the right place at the right time, when someone comes along and wants to back you and take it further and there’s no easy way to do it, it’s just not giving up and losing sight of your goal. It’s a case of racing every season and getting to point where you can’t be ignored. But, it’s a little bit of a vicious circle…you need to have the money to promote yourself or it’ll cost you, or your family, a lot of bucks along the way.
Dabbsy: What do you think of Hizzy saying he would do beat Joey’s TT record easily
JeremyMcWilliams: He didn’t do at the time…I’ve got to say I was always a big Joey fan. So the very fact that he could whip everyone when he was 46. That’s enough said, nobody ever beat Joey comprehensively when he was there.
Martyh: Do you think you will ever race at home in Ireland again other than supermotos & would you like to?
JeremyMcWilliams: Unfortunately circuits over here are shit, and I have no inclination to ride on them ever again but they make bloody good Supermoto tracks.
Dabbsy: What was it like to crash at Catalunya?
JeremyMcWilliams: Oh, that old one. That was only hairy when I saw it on video, at the time it was just another race gone wrong. And it was over so quickly I had no time to think about it. It was only later when I saw it on video, and went out to measure the skidmarks that it actually set in
Mrsticky: What’s it like racing knowing that your machinery is uncompetitive. Is it hard to phsyc yourself up?
JeremyMcWilliams: Yeah..it is.. It is a bloody good question It’s a little bit like…you’re never going to get there but if you can at least achieve something, if you can at least annoy the top guys then you’ve got soemthing. At Welkom hassling Biaggi was great, then the next guys in front included Nakano and Katoh, so I could have been right up there, and in Japan after I passed the top guys they crashed, so that’s enough to keep me going
Alanmcgregor: Is Kenny Roberts a tough boss?
JeremyMcWilliams: He is actually very, very straight talking which helps because there is no beating around the bush with him, and fortunately we agree on most things with the bike. He’s got a great understanding of the bike. plus as I said before he watches everything from the sidelines and if I’m too slow somewhere he’s very quick to tell me
But I accept that. I accept constructive criticism, especially from the likes of Kenny R
Alanmcgregor: What do you think of the demise of the 250cc class in British racing?
JeremyMcWilliams: I thought that was appalling. I don’t know who should be hanged for it, but to be honest, probably Foulston had a lot to do with that…. It’s ….I think…riders won’t be able to step into European and ultimately World championships. But somebody thinks it was a good idea…
Alanmcgregor: Do you think, given the right opportunities, that Gary Cowan or Woolsey Coulter could have won GP’s?
JeremyMcWilliams: Without a doubt. I looked up to both riders when my career started, and beating Woolsey when I was riding as a teammate for QB was my biggest acheivement at that time. If Woolsey had wanted to, he could have gone all the way. Woolsey is a character, and it just didn’t suit him at the time.
Eviekenevie: Will 125cc and 250cc be the natural progression into GPs, given the apparent domination of the 4stroke machines?
JeremyMcWilliams: I think that every rider has to come through one of those classes before they go into MotoGP. Unless they are coming from another World Championship Maybe Superbike riders will be able to ride in MotoGP now But most of the greats have come all the way through.
Mrsticky: What was the best race you road (assen?)
JeremyMcWilliams: It’s probably… the best one I ever had was beating Valentino and Capirossi, on a private Honda because I lost four seconds when a petrol breather pipe came off. We had a kitted Honda.
Dabbsy: Do you wish you were on a four-stroke – do you fancy Biaggi’s slot at Yamaha?
JeremyMcWilliams: *laughs*..yeah..I do wish I was on a four stroke but, I would really prefer it to be a V5 at the minute. Don’t fancy Biaggi’s Yamaha. Not until it gets a bit better!
Uel: How much would you charge me for a sticker on your bike for one race?
JeremyMcWilliams: That’s negotiable! But upwards of three or four grand depending on it’s size. Cheap at twice the price! And that’s for about a two or three centimetre sticker.
Peter: Did your missus work for Ryanair in Dublin a few years back, because a friend of mine worked there and claimed that she did?
JeremyMcWilliams: Not Ryanair. She worked for British Midland and…Maersk on the Birmingham route from Belfast. It was nice when I could fly on standby for ten quid.
Terry and Helen: We met you at the hotel before last year’s Portuguese GP. So glad we said hello because you were so nice and sorted us out great passes and took time to talk to us in the pits…what a fantastic weekend and what a top geezer..just wanted to say thanks and to let you know we’re cheering you on at every race
JeremyMcWilliams: Well it was a pleasure. Not sure I can get you passes for races again though…
JeremyMcWilliams: Thanks to everyone for your questions, but I better get back to work in the shop. Bye