Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 4 October 2015

Memorial to Robert Dunlop gives William incentive

By Jim Gracey

Published 10/05/2010

Top rider William Dunlop sets out today for Saturday’s Relentless North West 200, determined to honour the memory of his famous father, Robert.

William described the unveiling on Saturday of a Robert Dunlop memorial garden in the family's home town of Ballymoney as a ‘humbling' experience.

And he revealed how he returned after the official ceremony to share private thoughts with Robert, and his uncle, Joey Dunlop, who is also honoured nearby.

This week marks the second anniversary of the loss of Robert, after a crash in practice at the North West.

The 10th anniversary of Joey's fatal accident in Estonia is next month.

William said: “We had a lovely day at the unveiling of dad's Memorial Garden and it was really very humbling to be there and see what has taken place.

“Its really fantastic and a credit to Ballymoney Borough Council and my dad's pal Liam Beckett — if it were not for them, it would not be here.

“I went back up on Saturday evening and sat on the bench and had a few quiet moments to myself. That's the whole purpose of this garden, a place to come and collect your thoughts beside both Joey and dad.”

William goes in five North West races with his best hopes in the 125 and Supersport races on his Chris Dowds R6 Yamaha.

“The bike is as good as any other 600's out there, so it will be all down to getting a good practice time and trying to get onto the front two rows of the grid,” he added.

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