temporary retirement

Beste en Lieve mensen,

Gisteren heb ik definitief de knoop doorgehakt en besloten om voorlopig te stoppen met mijn actieve race carrière.

Dit was niet makkelijk maar de beslissing was wel bespoedigd door de gebeurtenissen deze afgelopen zomer. Het feit dat ik bij mijn enige zware crash die ik heb meegemaakt in al mijn race jaren er wel eentje was die hard aankwam. Letterlijk en figuurlijk.

Het afschrijven van mijn racemotor in die ene seconde heeft een gat geslagen in mijn racebudget en feitelijk me daardoor failliet gemaakt.

Verder kreeg ik eerder deze week een bericht van de KNMV (nationale motorsportbond) over de licenties voor het komend jaar. Daarin stond dat de kosten voor een race licentie voor 2014 met 54% zijn gestegen t.o.v. 2013 (van €257 naar €396)! Daarnaast is de laatste jaren het inschrijfgeld voor evenementen ook drastisch gestegen omdat er steeds minder rijders zijn, en de verzekeringspremies voor organisaties ook alsmaar stijgen. En men de kosten hiervan doorbelast aan de rijders.. 

Hierdoor ben ik vaak genoodzaakt om al grote bedragen te betalen in het begin van het seizoen nog voorafgaand aan het rijden van 1 meter op het asfalt.

Ik heb gelukkig deze laatste 5 race seizoenen veel beleefd en bereikt, na een eerdere racestop van 10 jaar. Ik heb op legendarische circuits gereden waarvan menigeen beweerde dat ik er nooit zou rijden. En enkele goede resultaten behaald ook, plus de meeste race evenementen zijn er over 50 jaar nog steeds! Kortom over 10 jaar kan ik mogelijk weer beginnen indien de situatie er dan beter voor staat.

Als laatste doorslaggevende factor is het feit dat mijn oudste dochter ook erg grote sportieve aspiraties heeft. Maar dan op 1 pk want zij wil een springamazone worden en de top bereiken in de paardensport. Kortom een goed doel om zelf ook tijd en energie evenals geld in te steken!

 

Hierbij wil ik iedereen (Jan en alleman) bedanken die me heeft ondersteund en geholpen deze laatste 5 jaren. Dit is op allerlei manieren geweest van 1 kan Diesel tot geldbedragen van klein tot groot. Maar wat ik altijd heb gezegd en nog steeds zo is, is dat alle KLEINE beetjes helpen en samen toch een GROOT verschil maken. Ik heb me altijd bevoorrecht gevonden dat anderen het mogelijk maakte om mijn passie en verslaving uit te oefenen. Racen op afgesloten openbare stukken weg.

HARTELIJK BEDANKT en TOT ZIENS!

Peter Heijmans
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Luck of the Irish

While I am posting this, practice for the worlds fastest road race (UlsterGP) are well underway. I should have been there out on track but sadly this is not the case. I therefore wish everyone competing a safe race and anyone going to watch a nice viewing day of great racing this Saturday!

The fact that I am not riding at Dundrod is because I had a big off at the Mid Antrim meeting on the 3rd of august. After a good 13th position in the open race, against bigger SBK machinery earlier in the morning. I made headstart in the 2nd wave of riders and was leading this group. I wanted to make a gap between the other riders behind me and so came into this ‘s’ bend called Elders a bit faster then usual. As an result I ended up in the grass verge beside the road on the exit of the corner. There I have hit a ditch or have run straight into a small wall/hedge. The bike came to a halt there imedeately and I was thrown over it and landed on my back and slid along the road. Luckily I could stand up myself and after a check up there seemed nothing to have broken. I just was smashed up and bruised. More then a week later now there a very large blue/yellow spots appearing and all of my ribs are still sore and bruised. So I am not in a good condition to have been able to achieve some good results at the UGP.

So gladly we still have the pictures from Alexanders as a memory. First I would like to thank Davey McCarthney and Seamus Dobbin plus the Mid Antrim club for the great support and organising a very well run event. I also got an invitation to visit the major of Ballymena on the friday morning. Together with some other foreign riders we were kindly welcomed by her and given an audience with some tea. The course showed me that racing the Irish nationals is something completely different and that U could do with some Motocross experience. The roads are so bumpy and uneven that the bike is not one time at rest. The remains of the R6 have now already been sold and I have paid the owner of it the remaining money. So this has left me without a bike and no budget anymore for this remaining season. We will have time enough now to see what we can arrange for next year and if we can continue racing in 2014.

A week before on the 27th of July the Armoy race meeting was held. Under good weather conditions lots of top riders had entered for the races. After the usual friday morning scruteneering and a newcomers briefing including a busride around the track. Later in the afternoon my first laps could be made. A great track also with a massive 6th gear jump on the back section. With ever improving times I was confident that we could have some good races. The open race was first and again I set myself up between some faster SBK machines. Only at the first lap a rider in front of me got his knee into the dirt which lifted up a stone. That endend up on my screen and shoulder and upseting me a bit. My screen was cracked, but I resumed my ritm and finished in a steady 22nd place.

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I taped up the screen with ductape and soon after was out on the startgrid for the supersport race again. With ever improving laptimes and me getting to grips with the bumpy track conditions we ended up in 18th position. Because the clerk of the course decided to bring down the numbers of riders from 27 to 18 on saturday morning. This meant that I could not start in the Grand Final race as I only had qualified in 23rd place on friday. So despite a big crash at around 200 kmh, I am still in one piece. So I had some luck of the Irish and I’m still able to make some new plans. I would like to thank everyone who helped us out and all the new friends we have made on this trip. THANKS!

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Irish experience

Last weekend saw me make my debut at a Irish National Road Race. It was the Skerries meeting just above Dublin, held by the Loughshinny club. After a quick and on time flight from Eindhoven I arrived at 11 in the morning at Dublin airport. Straight into a well arranged taxi ride by EICL to the paddock. In time for scrutineering, this went well for the bike except my helmet. the MCUI official doubted the date of my helmet and almost tore the lining apart to get it checked. It’s a helmet that is only 2 yrs old and looks like that, has approval stickers from 3 nations. By befenit of the doubt I got the approval to race and a bullocking reprimand as if I was a newcomer to racing.

2pm saw me getting the bus ride for newcomers with extensive talking by local rider Andy Farelly. After just looking over gillies leap he says there is just one line over the crest. You aim for the telegraph pole, in which everyone shouts which one?? since we can see 4 of them, Oo the one with the white bale. Which of the 3 then? Oo the one in the middle. Hmm yes. I knew Olivers Mount was tight and small, Skerries takes this to the extreme. The back section really has one racing line, and if you get beside it your in trouble!

4pm sees me out on track for the first time for 5 newcomers laps behind a marshall, then straight afterwards 3 laps untimed for the open race. Track is still very dusty but weather conditions are fine. The R1 feels good also so we feel very confident. The timed practice went well, only 5 laps though so after some traffic found myself a bit of space to set a time. Ended up in 23rd position so got me qualified since the 24 riders would be classified according to the regs.

Saturday morning welcomes me with great summer weather again. After scrutineering for the 2nd time eventually the riders briefing starts. Because of concern that the first riders will lap the last riders with 3 waves of 8 riders it is decided that only 16 riders will start per race. Shame since this leaves me without a ride in the main open race, but start in the Non qualifiers race. But on the upside on the second row behind ‘Indi’ the Czech rider. After 2 warm up laps we park up at the grid in the 2nd row like stated on the sheet. Some frantic waving of officials sees the whole field reshuffled and gets me back on the 7th row. So I start in the 2nd wave on the 2nd row. I get a bad start, not my usual, have to get to grips to all the power of the big R1. After a few laps we got through traffic and had an open clear road in front of me. This gets me in a good ritm and I even got by some riders of the first wave. I end up in 7th place and better my laptime by 6 seconds.

Sadly my time is not good enough to be on the grid for the 17th fastest in the Grand Final race of the day. Would have been great to ride once again for the + 25.000 spectators that lined the track. And for sure I knew that my laptimes could have even be improved. So I enjoyed this thrilling race from behind the hedges myself and saw Micky D being once again be the man to beat. Saturday evening saw us heading to Ollies for a good party in support of the 2stroke supportersclub. Sunday we flew back home and I had a wonderful experience behind me. A big big thanks to Peter McMahon and his family and friends for giving me this opportunity. Sadly the R1 is not homologated anymore to race at the UGP what would have been a great for the Dundrod track. But maybe the near future will bring some new adventures? As the Irish would say ‘Keep er Lit’.

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And were off!

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Everything packed and ready for take off tomorrow. Weather forecast is looking good. So hopefully we have a good weekend with lots of tracktime. And a well run event by the loughshinny motorcycleclub.

Updates can be followed via RRR.com

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Skerries

Well after a busy couple of days, I am delighted to announce that I shall be racing on team EICL AIRCON Yamaha R1 Superbike in the Skerries Open and Grand Final roadraces. Which will be held on 5/6 July.

This bike from Peter McMahon was available for this meeting and after a quick contact between each other the deal was struck. He had a good bike on offer and an excellent team set up with full use of a racetruck and mechanic. Further were our goals on the very same level. To have a good event full of fun and laughter and get a decent result on the R1. Which is good enough for a first race at the Skerries track.

I would like to thank the Loughshinny MCSC as they have been very accommodating in accepting our late entry and for their interest in assisting a foreign national to race in Ireland. I believe I’m the first ever racer from The Netherlands to race in Skerries!!

We may be short a pair of hands for the Friday and Saturday, so if anyone would like a job (just general mechanical assistance), please email me. Ideally I would like someone that has experience of being mechanic for a racer on race days.

Don’t forget to give me a wave of your raceprogram, since it will be supporting the club. The EICL AirCon R1 s’bike is blue/white with black belly pan and I will be using the number 127.

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media attention

Well we are starting to get some more media attention these last months. After being in the MOTOR and MOTO73 magazines, I found a picture of myself in GRIP. The magazine from our Dutch motorcycle federation KNMV.

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And today I received the summer 2013 edition magazine from the TT supporters club. In which is a write up about my participation at the 2012 ManxGP. Thanks Gert Meulman. All in all good promotion for myself but also for Road Racing in general in the Netherlands.

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NW200 epilogue

> Hello followers, dear supporters

This time a small report by me from my participation at the North West 200. In collaboration with Moto73 a Dutch motorcycle magazine they made a report about me, this is posted on the media page. I know it is difficult to read for you all but Google translate might help.

Also there is the interview that was printed in Motor Magazine a few weeks ago, so all in all good promotion for me in the media this last month.

My NW200 can be summarized in;

  • It’s a long trip to Northern Ireland (4 ferry crossings and 3000km in total) but one that is more than worth it.
  • The NW200 is indeed a very big international event, where all the top riders participate. Many riders and teams are fully factory supported.
  • With the above bullet then my connection in times and results is quite good. On a very tight budget.

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With a 26th and 29th place in the Supersport where my R6 is virtually bog standard, not too bad. And a disappointing 18th place in the supertwin class is not that bad. The ER6 supertwin runs fine and on

Top speed and power it can measure itself with the top ones. Only I in the 1st race I opted to ride with a 45 rear sprocket with the heavy wind. This was at the expense of top speed which I lost out to the front runners. In the 2nd race I wanted to race with a 44 rear so we got more top speed like the top 10 riders. Unfortunately this competition day washed out because of the rain, but Though a very fair decision of the race officials to cancel the races. I feel sorry for all the spectators who turned up without seeing a race but that is Mother Nature and we can’t do anything about it.

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Now, we are preparing for the 2nd trip to Ireland at the end of July. I have opted not to race this weekend in Belgium at the IRRC meeting. I need to buy new raintyres, my set was ruined at the dry/wet race on Thursday. And the tyrewarmers burned through on the grid on Saturday morning. So not expected costs in our budget. At the UlsterGP mid-August I can resume the sportive battle with almost all the same riders. And I hope to achieve some better results then. In preparation before we will do 2 smaller Irish national races at the Armoy and Mid-Antrim meetings.

Kind Regards

Peter Heijmans

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