Author Topic: Robert Dunlop killed in North West 200  (Read 7158 times)

Rav67

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Re: Robert Dunlop killed in North West 200
« Reply #45 on: May 16, 2008, 03:13:10 PM »
I was just checking out motorbike accident rates there. According to Wiki, 2004 figures from the Department for Transport in the UK indicate that motorcycles have 121 deaths or serious injuries per 100 million vehicle kilometres.

It's probably reasonable to assume that an average biker would travel at least 100,000 kilometres in his biking lifetime. That would suggest a death or serious injury rate of 121 per 1,000 motorcyclists, or 12.1% ! You have approximately one chance in nine of being killed or seriously injured if you're a regular motorbike user. I can't think of another activity with such a high risk rate - even in sports where the prime intent is to injure your opponent or in intuitively dangerous activities like flying, sky-diving, deep sea diving, mountaineering, etc. 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Motorcycle_safety

From looking at your link, those figures are for motorcycle riding not racing, so I'm sure the figure of 121 per 100,000,000 is much higher for racing on roads even allowing for greater skill among racers.

Doogie Browser

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Re: Robert Dunlop killed in North West 200
« Reply #46 on: May 16, 2008, 03:40:19 PM »
Condolences to the Dunlop family during what must be a very difficult time. RIP Robert.  Phillip McCallan was on Good Morniing Ulster this morning and really articulated what this sport means to men of his ilk.
This sport is in the blood of these families in much the same way GAA & Soccer run through our blood.

My own personal opinion would be to scrap this as a sport, but I have no right to claim this. 

On another note BBC NI are launching a new show tonight about two motorbike mad brothers from the North East of the 6 counties (Aghadowey I think) and it is a spin off from that horrendous Dry Your Eyes shite.  Wonder will they have the foresight to cancel it as I don't think there will be much humour derived from it at the best of times but particularly now and the fact that inferences could be made with the show and another Sporting Family who served that area and their sport with great distinction.

Hardy

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Re: Robert Dunlop killed in North West 200
« Reply #47 on: May 16, 2008, 03:43:59 PM »
Rav67 - yes - I didn't point it out explicitly, but these figures were for normal motorbike use. I imagine the statistics for racers must be horrendous.

Deel Rover - I won't second-guess another parent's decision. I'm sure bikes are great fun. I'd love one myself, except I don't want to be another of those old farts who take up bikes in their dotage. And of course, the more careful, well-trained, etc. you are, the better chance you have of coming through alive. BUt two things would still convince me to take the attitude I did with my own kids.

1. No matter how careful you are, accidents happen. If an accident happens on a bike, you haven't much chance.

2. No matter how well I'd have trained my lads and taught them not to speed, etc. I still wouldn't be sure  that they'd follow that advice. It's a teenager's job to rebel against what their parents tell them and it's also their job to seek thrills. I know if I'd had a bike as a youngster I'd have been that way.

the Deel Rover

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Re: Robert Dunlop killed in North West 200
« Reply #48 on: May 16, 2008, 03:58:36 PM »
Rav67 - yes - I didn't point it out explicitly, but these figures were for normal motorbike use. I imagine the statistics for racers must be horrendous.

Deel Rover - I won't second-guess another parent's decision. I'm sure bikes are great fun. I'd love one myself, except I don't want to be another of those old farts who take up bikes in their dotage. And of course, the more careful, well-trained, etc. you are, the better chance you have of coming through alive. BUt two things would still convince me to take the attitude I did with my own kids.

1. No matter how careful you are, accidents happen. If an accident happens on a bike, you haven't much chance.

2. No matter how well I'd have trained my lads and taught them not to speed, etc. I still wouldn't be sure  that they'd follow that advice. It's a teenager's job to rebel against what their parents tell them and it's also their job to seek thrills. I know if I'd had a bike as a youngster I'd have been that way.

Ye i agree with you hardy i have a bike myself don't use it very often  but when i do i really enjoy it , i don't ride it for the thrill of speed or anything in fact it can't go that fast . Like you i have 2 kids and i don't really know what to do either. A few months ago i was going to sell the bike because like you i didn't want my Kids to be riding them because ok i know i'm a safe rider but i wouldn't know how my children would be, then i was talking to my friend and i could see where he was coming from, i would love in future years if my kids got older to go to the south of france or europe touring and that we would have an interest together just like i hope to be going to gaa matches ect ect with them. Its like everthing in life i suppose i would rather my kids do whatever they are going to do with me rather than rebelling behind my back ( talking ideally i know) however like you said i wouldn't want to be encouraging them by glamourising the bike .
Crossmolina Deel Rovers
All Ireland Club Champions 2001

stew

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Re: Robert Dunlop killed in North West 200
« Reply #49 on: May 16, 2008, 04:27:38 PM »
I have a bike, a  kawasaki vulcan nomad and I use it for work every day during the summer. I love the fact that the only thing I have to do for that hour is to concentrate on the ride and there are no phones going off and no radio blaring, nor are there people talking to me when I am riding.

I am aware always of the dangers involved with motorbikes and i am always looking out for the inattentiveness of others because it can kill.

Although I lobe the bike I am selling it next spring because I can no longer justify the risk, I have had two near misses in the past two years and I have decided to sell the bike and move on.

I feel for the Dunlop family and hope they can move on with their lives after the mourning is over. What a sad loss.
Armagh, the one true love of a mans life.

the Deel Rover

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Re: Robert Dunlop killed in North West 200
« Reply #50 on: May 16, 2008, 04:29:48 PM »
I have a bike, a  kawasaki vulcan nomad and I use it for work every day during the summer. I love the fact that the only thing I have to do for that hour is to concentrate on the ride and there are no phones going off and no radio blaring, nor are there people talking to me when I am riding.

I am aware always of the dangers involved with motorbikes and i am always looking out for the inattentiveness of others because it can kill.

Although I lobe the bike I am selling it next spring because I can no longer justify the risk, I have had two near misses in the past two years and I have decided to sell the bike and move on.


I feel for the Dunlop family and hope they can move on with their lives after the mourning is over. What a sad loss.

Were you going fast with the two near misses stew ?
Crossmolina Deel Rovers
All Ireland Club Champions 2001

ExiledGael

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Re: Robert Dunlop killed in North West 200
« Reply #51 on: May 16, 2008, 04:33:51 PM »
Lot of interesting debate on this today accross the media and on here.
People suggesting a proper course at the Maze are effectively killing off the road-racing aspect, or the real danger, which is what gives these men that buzz that they crave. That'll change the sport fundamentally, and while it may be safer, these racers will never agree to it. Besides it's the whole history and culture of the North West that draws in the thousands, and the drinking. The Maze arena would sanitise the sport and kill of what makes it such an event for these people.
Type in the North West on Google and countless references on tourist sites to this 'death defying' 'must see' event pop up. That's what makes it special for racing enthusiasts.
Dunlop's death yesterday came as a result of the bike seizing, it wasn't an especially dangerous stretch of road or corner, and people within the sport have said an accident like that can happen at any time on any open road for any motorcyclist. He was thrown off the bike, then hit by the rider behind who was also injured.
It was a mechanical failure, the issue is the speed and I don't think we'll ever slow the sport down.
Heard a statistic this morning that this is only the second death at the NW 200 in almost 20 years, anyone know if this is accurate?
On the other hand that's now Robert, Joey and a brother in law all killed racing. Robert's sons William and Michael were due to race this week too. These people know the risk, as can be seen from the family-backed decision to go ahead with the races.
Despite the death of a big name, nothing really has changed in the sport. People get killed in action from time to time, it's a factor all these men were aware of and they will go down in Armoy Armada folklore.
Thank God I have no friends or relatives connected to the sport, in saying that I've plenty who are pretty reckless on four wheels.
The sport will continue, more people will die.

Tonto

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Re: Robert Dunlop killed in North West 200
« Reply #52 on: May 17, 2008, 12:19:27 PM »
Just heard that his son, Michael, has won the first race in this years NW200.

RIP Robert

small white mayoman

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Re: Robert Dunlop killed in North West 200
« Reply #53 on: May 17, 2008, 12:27:59 PM »
Just heard that his son, Michael, has won the first race in this years NW200.

RIP Robert

crikey you would wonder how his son could get up on a bike and concentrate 2 days after his father died they must be bike mad and really love the sport
RIP Robert Dunlop
All Ireland Champions 2006 & 2007

JimStynes

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Re: Robert Dunlop killed in North West 200
« Reply #54 on: May 17, 2008, 11:40:41 PM »
Fair play to the son for going on and winning it. This sport is madness though. I know people will say that its like us playing gaelic football. I love gaa with a passion but if it had the dangers and risks that racing does i would give it up in a second. Its unfair to put that kind of worry on their wives and children every week.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/northern_ireland/7406127.stm

Aerlik

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Re: Robert Dunlop killed in North West 200
« Reply #55 on: May 18, 2008, 06:47:48 AM »
Lads, there has been a few interesting posts on this one.  I have to say that even though I don't ride bikes I do enjoy the races.  My big brother is a biker and although not a speed merchant, loves the road races.  He and I used to go to the NW200 with his mates and the last event I went with him to was the Mid-Antrim "500" (I think it was called) in 1998.  It was there that I got to meet Joey and Robert both and they both autographed the same wee bit of paper for me which is now safely stored at home in Ireland.  Those two men were gentlemen.  Robert used to be sponsored by a certain haulage company from Co.Derry with very, very strong links to Dunloy.  So much for religion being a barrier in sport.  They epitomised all that is good about sport.  You'd often see Robert going through Kilrea to Ballymoney and he'd always acknowledge you. 

This is just so sad. God rest you Robert.
To find his equal an Irishman is forced to talk to God!

Maguire01

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Re: Robert Dunlop killed in North West 200
« Reply #56 on: May 18, 2008, 06:47:18 PM »
I see there was a minute silence at Casement today.  Good stuff.

Seany

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Re: Robert Dunlop killed in North West 200
« Reply #57 on: May 18, 2008, 09:17:35 PM »
Actually the story is worse.  i was at the NW this weekend and the story is that Robert's bike got stuck in gear, so he went to clutch.  The clutch is on the right handlebar, but Robert can't use his right hand because of his 1994 accident.  By accident, he pressed the button  on the handlebar which is the brake and that threw him over the handlebars.   Imagine the heartache for his wofe, Louise.  Losing her brother in law, then her husband and now her 2 sons are involved.  She said she knew he was going to die from the sport.  Does she also know about her sons? What a way to live.  I love motor racing, but it's time to call a halt...

JimStynes

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Re: Robert Dunlop killed in North West 200
« Reply #58 on: May 18, 2008, 11:44:46 PM »
Actually the story is worse.  i was at the NW this weekend and the story is that Robert's bike got stuck in gear, so he went to clutch.  The clutch is on the right handlebar, but Robert can't use his right hand because of his 1994 accident.  By accident, he pressed the button  on the handlebar which is the brake and that threw him over the handlebars.   Imagine the heartache for his wife, Louise.  Losing her brother in law, then her husband and now her 2 sons are involved.  She said she knew he was going to die from the sport.  Does she also know about her sons? What a way to live.  I love motor racing, but it's time to call a halt...

Totally agree, its not worth it. It breaks your heart just watching the footage of the son on the winners podium the other day then the funeral today. Cant even begin to imagine the heart break and devastation that the family must be going through. Its just not worth the risk, something needs to be done.

ONeill

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Re: Robert Dunlop killed in North West 200
« Reply #59 on: May 19, 2008, 12:06:45 AM »
I disagree with anyone who calls for an end to this sport. People have a choice. It's a massively popular sport in certain parts and unless it's in your blood, you don't understand the the buzz/adrenline it gives the participants as well as their followers. Those who take part, and the relatives of, know the dangers - as do others involved in sports which involved high speed from skiing to horse racing.
I wanna have my kicks before the whole shithouse goes up in flames.