|THE name of Joey Dunlop will live on for ever on the Snaefell Mountain circuit with the confirmation that the 26th milestone is to be renamed in his memory.
Following greats of the past, such as Wal Handley, Bill Doran, Jimmy Guthrie, Les Graham and Mike Hailwood, the 26th milestone on the climb out of the Gooseneck towards the Mountain Mile will now be known as Joey's in recognition of Dunlop s 26 wins on the course.
The decision was made at Wednesday s meeting of the TT Co-ordinating committee at the headquarters of the Auto-Cycle Union in Rugby, when it was also agreed that no number three would be used for any solo race in next year's TT other than the Senior.
In addition a new trophy in memory of Joey Dunlop is to be presented to the rider achieving the best overall performance in the Formula One and Senior. Honda are working with the TT organisers to provide this new award.
Other items on the agenda included the delicate subject of a direct clash between a round of the British Superbike Championship and the middle weekend of the 2002 TT.
Tourism Minister David Cretney MHK, chairing his last TT Co-ordinating committee meeting before the General Election, revealed yesterday that the representation made to Robert Fearnell of British Motorsports Promoters Ltd (the organisers of the British Superbike series) was very strong indeed.
'The committee stressed its concerns about possible conflicts of interest for a number of competitors who would be unable to contest both events, said David.
'Also the possible negative impact on spectators and difficulties over trade support.
'Mr Fearnell had already met representatives of the motor cycle industry prior to our meeting when both Honda and V&M Yamaha had supported the concerns of the TT Committee.
'His main concern is over the TV and commercial aspects of a date change as the calendar is now so crammed during the summer months that there simply aren't enough free weekends for all the events.
'He s gone away to discuss the situation with other promoters, but frankly I'm not that confident we can turn it around this time.
In addition to David Cretney, the Isle of Man was represented at the meeting by Eddie Lowey MLC, director of Leisure Mike Ball, TT clerk of the course Neil Hanson and former clerk of the course Jack Wood who now acts as a consultant.
Also on the committee and in attendance were ACU chairman Ted Bartlett, road race committee chairman Jim Parker and fellow ACU officials Don Ryder and Brian Bonny.
With regards to the foot-and-mouth situation the committee agreed wholeheartedly that next year's TT had to go ahead. David Cretney informed those in attendance that the Departments of Tourism and Agriculture, Forestry & Fisheries were currently working together to see how the TT could run without compromising the agriculture industry if foot-and-mouth was to continue into the New Year.
'We have the advantage of time to put workable restrictions and precautions in place,' he emphasised.