Roads: Jeremy McWilliams joins Wilson Craig Honda for 2023 North West 200 Supersport races

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Jeremy McWilliams has joined forces with Wilson Craig Honda for this year’s North West 200 and will ride a CBR600RR in the Strain Engineering and Tides Restaurant Supersport races.

The former Grand Prix racer rode a Wilson Craig Honda 600 at last year’s Sunflower Trophy event, with this latest opportunity arising after Matthew Rees crashed out of the recent Cookstown 100 road races, breaking his back and wrist.

His 2023 CBR600RR’s engine has been built by the Ten Kate World Supersport team, whilst McWilliams will also contest the Supertwin class onboard a Bayview Hotel Paton. The 59-year-old is the most successful racer in the history of the Supertwin class with three victories.

McWilliams finished third in the opening 600cc NW200 race last year, finishing behind Alastair Seeley and Davey Todd onboard his Burrows/RK Racing Yamaha.

He also finished third behind Joe Loughlin and Lee Johnston in last year’s Supertwin race, following a disqualification for Richard Cooper.

“I never envisaged I wouldn’t be back,” McWilliams said. “When the opportunity arose to be on good bikes like the Wilson Craig machines and the Bayview Paton it was one not to be missed.

“It was a decent scrap [last year]. I was battling with Davey in the wet and the circuit was in good shape. It was as much fun riding in the wet as the dry, just a lot colder! By the end I think all three of us thought we had given it everything.

“You have to get away in the wave if you want to get the slipstream and stay with the leaders to get yourself into the right place at the right time. Unfortunately, the pack got broken up last year in Saturday’s race when James Hillier crashed.”

This year’s North West 200 will take place on May 7-13. The race schedule is as follows:

Thursday May 11

Race One – Strain Engineering Supersport Race (6 Laps) – 17:45

Race Two – Briggs Equipment Superstock Race (6 Laps) – 18:30

Race Three – Milltown Service Station Supertwin Race (4 Laps) – 19:15

Saturday May 13

Race 1 – Tides Restaurant Supersport Race (6 Laps) – 10:00 Approximately

Race 2 – Anchor Bar Superbike Race (6 Laps)

Race 3 – J.M. Paterson Supertwin Race (4 Laps)

Race 4 – CP Hire Superstock Race (6 Laps)

Race 5 – Merrow Hotel and Spa NW200 Superbike Race (6 Laps)