Samantha Martin eyes 2021 Dunlop Masters Championship at Mondello
By Sean Moriarty
Kerry’s only female motorcycle racer took another step towards her championship debut after a successful high-speed test at Kirkistown on Saturday.
Samantha Martin, from Tarbert, had hoped to contest selected rounds of the Dunlop Masters Championship this season after securing her race licence in March last year.
She is the only Kerry woman to hold a Motorcycling Ireland race licence and made her debut at Mondello in April 2019 on a borrowed bike.
After that, her plan was simple, spend the rest of 2019 saving and securing enough money to buy her own bike and spend 2020 learning Mondello Park before a proper assault on the championship next year.
Her plans were, slightly, derailed by the pandemic – Mondello Park remains closed to motorcycle racing – but she got her season back on track this weekend by taking part in a high-speed test session at Kirkistown. This was her first visit to the County Down track.
“I did one race last year in April, just after I passed the track training day to get my license but I didn’t like it because I’d no experience and didn’t like the bike either,” she told Kerry Motorsport News. “I said I’d leave it off and buy my own bike instead and get comfortable with [racing] by doing track days before I make a proper go of racing. That’s what this year was supposed to be about but Mondello’s track days are cancelled now so this [Kirkistown] is my last one of the year.”
Her partner Andrew Murphy, from Mountcollins, a former Master’s Cup Champion, was also at Kirkistown on Saturday.
He has an entry in for next month’s King of Kirkistown national race meeting, the first meeting north or south of the border this year and used Saturday’s test session as a chance to re-familiarise himself with the track.