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Another two years and Joey Dunlop would have bowed out gracefully at 50

In part three of our tribute to Joey Dunlop, his former advisor and racing writer Leslie Moore looks at what the legendary rider's retirement plans might have been

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Lasting memory: Joey and Robert Dunlop share the winners' enclosure after the 2000 125cc TT. Joey won and Robert was third. It was their last race together

Lasting memory: Joey and Robert Dunlop share the winners' enclosure after the 2000 125cc TT. Joey won and Robert was third. It was their last race together

Lean machine: Joey races at the 2000 Isle of Man TT

Lean machine: Joey races at the 2000 Isle of Man TT

Joey with Leslie Moore

Joey with Leslie Moore

Lasting memory: Joey and Robert Dunlop share the winners' enclosure after the 2000 125cc TT. Joey won and Robert was third. It was their last race together

Would Joey Dunlop have retired from racing? It is a question that nobody will ever know the answer to as he himself was very much undecided 20 years ago when he was cruelly taken, aged just 48, while racing on that densely wooded road circuit near the Estonian capital Tallinn on Thursday, July 2, 2000.

Had he lived, I think fate would have played a major influence in that final decision, not least the agricultural foot and mouth disease epidemic that forced the cancellation of the 2001 TT and uncertainty over the availability of the best Honda machinery the following year for what would then have been a 50-year-old rider.

Sadly, we will never know.