The North-West 200 is next on the race schedule and Team ILR can confirm that Michael Rutter will be riding for the team in the Supertwin races on board a Team ILR - Mark Coverdale Paton S1-R, and he will partner Joe Loughlin who will also compete on the Team ILR - Mark Coverdale R6 Yamaha.
Rutter has worked with the team before and rode a Team ILR - Mark Coverdale Paton at the 2015 Isle of Man TT, and both he and the team recently tested at Mallory Park with both parties very happy with how things went.
The Paton S1-R is always a beautiful sight, and sound, on any race track it graces, not least around the famous Portstewart-Coleraine-Portrush circuit where it has previously finished fourth and third in the hands of James Chawke and Joey Thompson respectively.
Team ILR returned to the BSB paddock at Oulton Park over the May Day holiday weekend with two young riders returning to the team's awning to avail themselves of the guidance and support of Ian Lougher.
With one eye very much on the 'big two' road races of the year, Castleblayney's Joe Loughlin was again on the Team ILR - Mark Coverdale R6 Yamaha in both the British Supersport Championship races.
Linking up again with Lougher and his experienced team was James Alderson who was competing in the National Junior Superstock class on his own 675 Triumph just as he did last year with Team ILR at the same circuit.
Free Practice saw both riders settle in with James working on building confidence after a bad crash last year and he finished a steady 13th quickest in the standings after both sessions.
Qualifying saw Joe finish at the back of the grid for the Supersport Sprint race with James consolidating 13th place with a quicker lap than in practice.
Loughlin brushed off his qualifying disappointment to ride well in both Supersport races registering a best place 20th in the feature race, and with strong sector rides and bettering his best lap time at Oulton by over half a second he now turns his attention to the forthcoming International North-West 200.
Meanwhile despite some bad starts, Alderson had two strong rides in his class with an 8th place in Race 1 and 11th in Race 2.
Team ILR owner - manager Ian Lougher:
"The whole purpose for Joe doing Oulton was to help him get up to speed in readiness for the upcoming North-West 200 and TT road races.
The mileage and competitiveness of a BSB weekend is just the job to get you ready for that.
Joe bettered his times from previous visits to Oulton and rode really well all weekend… roll on the NW next week, I think everybody will see a much more polished and prepared Joe Loughlin there.
James was returning from smashing his shoulder last year where he had to sit out most of the season, so his confidence has not quite fully returned, but despite this he still came back after two poor starts in his races to move from 20th through to 8th, which was very impressive.
I know myself how it takes time for the confidence to return sometimes, but when you’re a young guy all you want to do is get back instantly to the level you were before an injury, so it’s a bit frustrating for James at the moment but you just have to be patient."
"I had a very successful weekend in Oulton Park with Team ILR/Mark Coverdale.
Ian sent me out in qualifying on the intermediate tyres which was perfect for my confidence.
I finished Race 1 in 25th place and got a great start in Race 2 where I finished 20th.
I improved my personal best lap time around Oulton Park by 0.6 seconds, scored a championship point with 15th Supersport 600 home in Race 2 and tried a lot of new things for the North West 200, so a great weekend overall.
Thanks to the whole team, brilliant job and it was great craic."
"The weekend started well managing a good couple of Free Practice sessions and feeling comfortable at Oulton Park again, qualifying was strong managing to get down to a good pace.
Race 1 went well getting down to a 1:41:2 only half a second off my PB so I was happy with that, Race 2 unfortunately never went to plan getting a bad start and dropping back which gave me a lot of work to do but I managed to bring the bike home in 11th place.
Overall a good weekend getting confidence back and was great to be working with Ian and the team again."
Team ILR began their 2022 season last weekend with young Italian Alessio Guarnieri taking part in the first round of the BSB National Junior Superstock Championship on the Team ILR - Mark Coverdale CBR600RR Honda.
Guarnieri, who is based in Switzerland with the Swiss Superbike Academy, only set eyes on the Silverstone circuit for the first time when he tested there in an Official BSB test the week before, but he arrived in the UK knowing there was no pressure being placed on him whatsoever by team boss Ian Lougher, and both he and the team used Free Practice to enable him to further feel his way around the fast, sweeping Northamptonshire circuit and he finished both practice sessions with a best time of 59.49s, three seconds quicker than his fastest time at the test.
Alessio went even quicker in qualifying with a lap of 58.79s to finish 35th quickest, but there was only one second covering the 16 riders in front of him, so it was a satisfactory first couple of days for the team.
Unfortunately Alessio got a bad start in the race and from there it was a struggle to make his way through the large field of riders, nevertheless he rode steadily throughout the 20 lap race and he enjoyed a good battle with Chris Johnson, finishing just ahead of the Kawasaki rider and in the process recording his fastest lap of the race with a 59.50s penultimate lap.
Silverstone concluded with the team and Guarnieri very pleased with their weekend's work, and what proved to be an excellent relationship will resume when Alessio takes part in the Oulton Park round in September.
Team ILR owner-manager Ian Lougher:
"It was never going to be easy for Alessio to arrive at a BSB paddock and compete with other British and Irish riders who know the circuit very well.
But as a 16 year old who only started racing one year ago it made it extremely difficult.
I was so impressed with his progress, especially his qualifying pace, he showed so much maturity and strength of character improving every time on track and even giving great feedback about the bike and set up.
His dad Francesco should be really proud of him as they fly back to Switzerland.
Not many lads of that age can keep strong mentally when they are not winning, he showed some great strength and never giving up."
"I left Silverstone with a different mindset and a lot of positive experiences being made, starting from Friday I improved a lot since the last test we did the week before. Then Saturday for qualy I improved even more, qualifying in p35...fast forward to the race on Sunday, I had a bad start due to the lack of confidence with the bike and dropped last into the first corner, after that I made up a couple places and finished P25.
I think this weekend was positive overall because we learned the weak points and good points of this new bike and we can use them for future races like the one in Oulton Park in September.
With this being said, every minute I spent in the BSB paddock with Team ILR was crucial for my experience as a rider.
I would like to thank the team for the amazing work done, and to my dad who supported me during this journey.. see you at Oulton Park!
Team ILR are pleased to announce that we will be running exciting young 16 year old prospect Alessio Guarnieri in the first round of the BSB Pirelli National Junior Superstock Championship at Silverstone on 15-17 April.
Alessio will ride the Team ILR - Mark Coverdale 2021 CBR600RR Honda imported by the team from Japan, and which proved to be very competitive when contested in four rounds of the same championship.
Alessio began his career at the age of nine, driving go karts in the Vortex series, moving up through the faster classes as he gained experience and honed his driving skills.
It was only as recent as September 2020 that he had his first test on a motorcycle, and he continued testing throughout the pandemic whilst patiently waiting to have his first competitive outing and prove himself on two wheels.
That opportunity finally arose when he raced in Moto 3 in April 2021 riding a Beon 450 GP.
It was during this time that he had three wild cards in the Italian Championship, known as “CIV” in the Supersport 600 Series and he made two podiums, a remarkable achievement in such a short period of time.
With a determination to move into 'full size' race bikes as soon as he can, Alessio has quickly gained a reputation of riding with a balance of safety and aggression.
He focuses on speed and high finishes while maintaining on track sensibility, and manages to balance the fast paced world of bike racing with his all important education.
The young Italian rider, who races under a Swiss licence, will initially link up with the team for the Official BSB test at Silverstone a week prior to the opening round.
Team ILR owner-manager Ian Lougher:
"We look forward to welcoming Alessio into the Team ILR fold.
It’s a tough job for any 16 year old to jump into the Junior Superstock class at BSB level, but especially so when they’ve never even seen the circuit before.
But he’ll have full support from us, with no pressure, and I’m convinced he’ll acquit himself very well once he’s learnt where he’s going.
I’m also sure the nimble chassis and smooth engine characteristics of the CBR600RR will suit a young rider like Alessio."
"The tests and the two races that I will have in the Pirelli National Junior Superstock Championship make me very excited, and I am pretty sure that it will be a huge experience for me.
If I recall when I started riding the first bike less than two years ago, I couldn’t imagine improving as fast as I did.
My main objective for Silverstone is to get up to speed quickly and manage to be in the best positions possible while understanding the new CBR 2021, this means gathering data in the tests and being aggressive in the race once settled on the bike.
I am looking forward to ride on such a beautiful circuit in the BSB paddock."
Everyone at Team ILR have been saddened by the news that race promoter and Oliver's Mount race chief Peter Hillaby has passed away following a long battle with illness.
Peter was widely acknowledged as the main driving force at Oliver's Mount and in the Auto 66 Club, and he oversaw racing at the North Yorkshire circuit for 40 years through good times and bad, and brought many of the top names in motorcycle and sidecar racing to Scarborough.
He also promoted racing at other circuits such as Cadwell Park, Carnaby and Elvington and his passing will leave a void for many years to come.
Team ILR owner-manager Ian Lougher:
"It's not an exaggeration to say that without Peter Hillaby, Oliver's Mount could well have been lost to motorcycle racing long before now, and many people owe him a huge debt of gratitude for that.
I always found Peter to be efficient at his job, and straight talking but fair, and we at Team ILR extend our condolences to his family and friends at this sad time."
Season concludes for Team ILR at Brands Hatch
Team ILR had their last outing of the season at a cold and damp Brands Hatch when the team was again joined by Adam McLean on the Team ILR - Mark Coverdale CBR600RR in the final round of the BSB Pirelli National Junior Superstock Championship.
Practice ended very positively with McLean 13th fastest, and despite a pre-determined Race 1 start from the rear of the grid, qualifying was still approached in the usual professional manner and Adam finished the session in 17th, with less than 2.5 seconds covering the Top 20 riders.
From 40th on the grid, Adam got a good start in the first race of the weekend and after the first lap he had made up seven places and by third race distance he was into the Top 30 and on the tail of two riders in front.
At the conclusion of the sixth lap McLean had finally got some clear track but the gap to the next rider was too big an ask with over eight seconds to make up.
However, despite losing some time on the last few laps, Adam had reduced the gap to just over 5.5 seconds at the flag as he came home in 24th.
Race Two would see Adam start from 17th on the grid however he dropped out of the Top 20 on the opening lap, but by the fourth lap he had worked his way up to 20th and he stayed there for a few laps before moving up to a fairly secure 19th with one lap to go and here he remained to the chequered flag.
Operating out of the TeamILR awning at Brands and delighted to be renewing his links with the team was Jim Hind.
Jim was competing in the British Supersport Championship on his privately entered Yamaha but unfortunately he was out of luck as he retired early from Race One, and in Race 2 he was one of the five riders who went down due to an oil spill, thankfully without injury.
Nevertheless there were also positives as, thanks to some excellent Team ILR teamwork particularly on the bike's suspension, the talented up and coming rider managed to lap the circuit a full second quicker than on his last visit there in July.
Team ILR owner-manager Ian Lougher:
"Racing in the UK in October is always going to be difficult, the weather is very hit and miss, Adam rode well but unfortunately at Brands we lost a fair bit of dry track time due to light showers.
So moving forward with a new bike is very challenging, but we learnt some more with the new model CBR600RR so hopefully we'll be able to use the info gained in the future.
Jim Hind joined us using his own Supersport bike so it was nice to help him move forward and mentor him over the weekend. I see Jim as a big star over the coming years.
I would like to thank everybody involved with Team ILR, all our sponsors, especially Mark Coverdale who is a very loyal friend and sponsor.
Also my long suffering wife Asa, Jacko, Willy, and RK who came along for the weekend to help out, making it his first time in the paddock since retiring at the end of 2018.
All our riders, and last but not least Stephen McKeown for all his hard work in pen pushing activities and PR work. Thank you.
See you all next year at the road circuits which will hopefully be back on, and various BSB meetings.
Once the calendar is decided we will let you all know our plans.
Cheers Ian x "
"Brands was a difficult weekend for us for a number of reasons, the results weren't what we were looking for but that's racing sometimes.
Nevertheless we gained some more knowledge with the new Honda and I learned the international circuit having previously only raced the Indy circuit and had an enjoyable weekend.
So we have still taken away the positives.
Also for me it was important to finish the season without injury, since 2019 I've only gone a few months at a time without injury so it's a relief not going into another winter of recovery.
I would like to thank Team ILR for the opportunity to finish the season in BSB, which will hopefully stand me in good stead going back to a full calendar of road racing in 2022."
Donington Park Report
An autumnal cold and wet Donington Park was the latest stop for Team ILR and Adam McLean as they took the CBR600RR project to the latest round of the BSB Pirelli National Junior Superstock Championship.
Practice ended on a positive note with McLean 15th fastest, but a wet qualifying session saw him down in 20th with the team using another wet warm-up session on Sunday morning to try and establish a good wet weather set-up should the need arise.
The race however got underway in dry conditions and from the seventh row of the grid Adam got a great start and at the end of the opening lap he was up to 10th.
By mid-race distance he was in the middle of a five rider battle for 11th with positions changing constantly.
With a lap to go McLean put in his fastest lap of the race and was putting in a determined challenge for a Top 10 finish when an 'over-enthusiastic' move by another rider almost put him in the dirt on the last lap and he did well to stay on and bring the Honda, and himself, home in one piece in 15th.
Justifiably upset by this move on the track, Adam made his feelings clear to the rider in question on the slowing down lap but was called into the race office afterwards where he unbelievably received a penalty for the final round at Brands Hatch which will see him start from the rear of the grid for Race One.
Team ILR owner-manager Ian Lougher:
"Once again we leave another circuit feeling a bit frustrated, as Adam and the whole team are giving everything we can to finish on a high note, but unfortunately things out of our power are stopping us achieving it.
We came away from Donington with a really good set up on the 2021 CBR600RR, but the Marc Marquez riding style antics from another rider meant that Adam (father to be any day now) almost ended up in the gravel trap and only achieving a 15th place finish, instead of a very creditable 11th spot after coming from 20th on the grid.
AND to add insult to injury he has to start the first race at Brands from the back of the grid now, while Young Marquez gets away scot free.
Anyway, as the saying goes what.... makes you stronger. "
"Donington proved a very challenging weekend with the changing weather conditions and going to another new circuit with the Honda.
Qualifying in wet conditions wasn't ideal for us meaning we started the race from row seven.
But luckily the conditions were dry for the race and after making a good start I had moved up to P11 by the last lap.
Unfortunately another rider ran into me forcing me off track and I dropped to P15 which was disappointing after the hard work to salvage a result from a difficult weekend.
Nevertheless an enjoyable weekend with Team ILR and looking forward to the final round at Brands Hatch next weekend."
Frustrating Weekend for Team ILR and Adam McLean at Oulton Park
It was a weekend of two halves when Team ILR returned to Oulton Park with Adam McLean for the latest round of the BSB National Junior Superstock Championship at the weekend.
Qualifying showed the terrific potential of the new Team ILR - Mark Coverdale CBR600RR Honda with Adam putting the bike at the head of the third row of the grid as 7th quickest for Saturday's first race.
All that good work unfortunately was scuppered with a jump start penalty after the clutch grabbed and the bike moved forward slightly, Adam had a couple of strong opening laps but the damage was done and he had to do a ride through which dropped him down to 21st when he re-joined the action.
Despite this he gamely battled on and eventually finished 18th.
The team shrugged off this disappointment and used the free practice session as a chance to work on a different set-up which McLean was happy with, but a slow start in Race 2 immediately put him on the back foot and he found himself behind a group of riders who were giving no quarter to each other.
This combined with front brake fade saw Adam wisely retire to fight another day.
The CBR600RR project is a work in progress, and progress is certainly being made in these early days as the team and Adam set their sights on the next round at Donington Park this weekend.
Team ILR owner - manager Ian Lougher:
"After a disappointing FP2 at Oulton when a part on the foot rest hangers broke which meant Adam could only get 3 laps in the session, as you can imagine with no data to work from and with the CBR600RR being a brand new model and the only one in the UK, we badly need every lap to try to find a base setting.
Despite this Adam managed to qualify in 7th place which was tremendous and shows what a class act of a rider he is.
To come away with only a 18th place finish and a DNF due to a jump start in the first race and brake fade in the second race is really frustrating.
(Incidentally it seems strange and maybe the rules need to be looked at, as to how is it fair to make a rider do a ride through penalty, costing him about 22 seconds and totally upsetting his rhythm, yet if you knock someone off you only get a 3 second penalty and no ride through!?!?)
So roll on Donington and we all at Team ILR/Mark Coverdale look forward to seeing how the Honda fares there."
"I had another enjoyable weekend at Oulton Park with Ian and the team, gaining more valuable knowledge on the new bike.
We had a positive qualifying session starting P7 on the grid but unfortunately a jump start penalty diminished an opportunity for a good result.
Big thanks to the team, Richard at Maxton and our sponsors.
Time to reset and look forward to a new opportunity at Donington Park in a few days time."
Lougher enjoys first ever Goodwood experience
It was a disappointing, yet enjoyable weekend for Team ILR owner-manager Ian Lougher as he paid a first ever visit to the Goodwood Revival meeting at the weekend.
Lougher was at Goodwood to link up with David Tetley, currently lying second in the Lansdowne Classic British Championship, and his Manx Norton in both of the 2 rider endurance races, with one race taking place on Saturday and the other on Sunday.
Practice didn't go quite as planned.
It was decided that David should go out first as he is the owner of the Manx Norton and rides the bike regularly and therefore could hopefully put in the faster time, the plan being that Tetley would do ten minutes and then come in for Lougher to take over.
A sensible game plan in theory, that was until the organisers cut the session from 30 mins down to 25 mins meaning Ian only got in 3 flying laps, hardly ideal preparation for a newcomer to the fast and technical Goodwood circuit.
So a starting place of 24th it was for the Le Mans style start with Lougher out first in Saturday's race and Tetley first on the Sunday.
However Sunday's race was not to be.
Ian had seven laps on the bike as Saturday's race got underway and then David took over, but unfortunately he high-sided on a fast left hander and the damage to the bike was such that any further participation was not possible.
More important though was the fact that David was ok and escaped with some cuts and bruises.
"It's so quick around Goodwood and it takes a while to get your confidence up, especially having never even ridden the bike before.
With the likes of riders like McWilliams, Hickman, Bridewell, Brookes, Dunlop, Haydon, Plater and not to mention the good classic guys like Glen English etc it was never going to be easy.
Despite the disappointment on the track the Goodwood Revival was really good craic, and my wife Asa and I really enjoyed ourselves and we embraced the spirit of nostalgia that the whole weekend conjures up."
Lougher Looking Forward To First Ever Goodwood Appearance
Team ILR owner-manager Ian Lougher has confirmed that he will take part in this weekend's Goodwood Revival meeting.
On what will be his very first visit to Goodwood, the 10 times Isle of Man TT winner will team up with David Tetley and his Manx Norton in both of the 2 rider endurance races, with one race taking place on Saturday and the other on Sunday.
David is currently lying second in the Lansdowne Classic British Championship and he and Lougher will be a formidable partnership on what is one of the iconic British motorcycles.
The Goodwood Revival recreates the glamour of motor racing as it used to be, with the circuit coming alive to the sights and sounds of machinery from a bygone era.
And it's not just on the track that the Revival takes place, the whole event is the only historic race meeting to be staged entirely in period dress, as it aims to see a return to the halcyon days of Goodwood as the spiritual home of British motor racing.
"I am really looking forward to my first visit to Goodwood and working alongside David Tetley, and can't wait to take in the unique atmosphere the Revival meeting creates.
Everyone has to dress up in 1950's or 1960's style in the daytime and there is a party on the Saturday night with a 1920's Hollywood glamour theme, so it should be great craic.
We've been looking for suitable clothes for the occasion before we set off, as apparently you don't want to buy any in the onsite shop there, where you can pay £600 for a jacket....as I'm too frugal to pay that...haha."
Productive Weekend for Team ILR and Adam McLean at Snetterton
Adam McLean put in a great performance as Team ILR returned to Snetterton for the latest round of the BSB Junior Superstock Championship at the weekend.
With an all-new Honda CBR600RR at their disposal the team and Adam were using Snetterton as an opportunity to familiarise themselves further with the bike, however after practice and qualifying it was clear they were certainly moving in the right direction.
On his first BSB appearance this year and on just his second appearance at Snetterton, the Tobermore rider knocked 0.8 seconds off his best time during qualifying.
A steady first session saw McLean finish in midfield, three seconds off the pace and after a few changes by the team he went almost 2.5 seconds quicker in the second session to finish 11th quickest, just over a second down on the quickest time.
Qualifying saw a further improvement of over 0.7 seconds to consolidate 11th place whilst reducing the gap to the pace-setters.
The race itself saw Adam ride consistently as he repeatedly reeled off laps in the 1.55's.
At the end of the opening lap he was running in 15th place, and by mid-race distance he had saw off the challenge of two other competitors to make this place his own as he set about closing in on 14th.
He eventually took 14th and was only 0.4s off 13th as the race reached its 12 lap conclusion to conclude a very satisfying and productive weekend in Norfolk for the team and Adam with lots of data gathered on the new Honda going forward.
Team ILR owner - manager Ian Lougher:
"It's fair to say that Asa and myself have worked fairly hard to get our new Honda CBR600RR ready to race at BSB level, not just getting the bike from Japan, but getting as much set up info as possible not to mention all the necessary spares in place just in case you need them.
So for Adam to qualify in 11th and almost a second faster than he did to finish 7th in the same race last year was really satisfying.
A 14th place finish doesn't sound fantastic in the race and doesn't tell the full story as we we were still searching for an even better set up with the front forks, but the organisers cancelled the warm up session because of an oil spillage on the track which would have let us find out that the changes we made were in the wrong direction.
But hey-ho, we're still learning with this new machine and look forward to Oulton Park.
We would like to thank Richard from Maxton Suspension and all the people in Japan who have helped us make this happen."
"I had an enjoyable first weekend back at BSB after an eleven month absence at Snetterton, I knew it would take some time to get back up to speed and I was pleased with my pace in qualifying.
A cancelled warm up session lost us vital set up time and hindered my progress in the race but we did gain some valuable knowledge on the new CBR600.
First impressions of the new bike were excellent and I would like to thank Ian & the team for doing a brilliant job throughout the weekend.
Looking forward to Oulton Park in a couple of weeks time!"
McLean to ride new Honda at Snetterton
Team ILR are looking forward to the next round of the BSB National Junior Superstock Championship at Snetterton where Tobermore star Adam McLean will ride an all-new 2021 Honda in the team's colours.
The bike in question is the latest CBR600RR and it will be the only one of its kind raced in the UK.
McLean himself has only just returned to racing this season, in 2020 he had a qualifying crash at Brands Hatch and suffered a broken right arm, despite this he finished a respectable 14th in the championship.
Adam worked hard to get back to fitness from what proved to be a troublesome injury and he returned to racing at the recent Armoy Road Races and registered a second place to Michael Dunlop in the first Supersport race, he also had podium finishes in the second race and in the Supertwin class.
Team ILR boss Ian Lougher has also been working hard behind the scenes during these unprecedented times, and he first spoke to McLean earlier this year about a possible seat on one of his bikes.
He managed to acquire not just one, but two of the latest Hondas directly from Japan, and as well as being the only models of their kind in the UK, they are currently the only ones in Europe.
Bad weather put paid to the first planned test at Bishopscourt a few weeks ago but the team and Adam managed about 20 laps at the circuit shortly afterwards, and a further test at Kirkistown at the weekend was more productive with progress being made in terms of getting familiar with the bike and finding a decent base setting going forward.
McLean came away in a positive frame of mind ahead of the trip to Norfolk, and his talent, coupled with Lougher's experience and guidance, presents a mouth watering opportunity for the fans to really see the bike being put through its paces at Snetterton.
Team ILR owner - manager Ian Lougher:
"We're really looking forward to Snetterton now, just to see how the the latest CBR600RR will perform is exciting, with a rider with Adam's talent onboard hopefully we can be competitive enough.
It's not been easy getting ready to race this machine, as nobody in Europe has one we have relied a lot on our good contacts in Japan for setup information, parts, and support, which have been a god send.
It's only Adam's second visit to Snetterton and the other BSB riders will be riding well at this late stage of the season, so we'll see how we go and enjoy the ride."
"Honda brought out a new 2021 Supersport bike but it didn't come to the European market for one reason and another, but Ian got two of them from Japan.
He approached me earlier on in the year and we had a chat about it, so the plan is to do as many of the remaining rounds as possible. It's an exciting project to be involved with and hopefully with Ian's experience, he can bring the best out of me on track.
It's a new bike so it took us a while to find a direction with it, first impressions are very good, so we'll see next weekend how we get on and go from there.
Snetterton will be a bit of a learning curve for us as well because we don't have much data for myself on the bike, so it will be about getting to know the bike more and finding a direction to go in for the rest of the year.
I'm looking forward to the challenge."
Lougher Wins At Armoy
Ian Lougher added yet another win to his distinguished racing CV and gave John Chapman a well deserved success when he took the honours in the Senior Classic 1000cc race at the annual Armoy Road Races at the weekend.
It was a superb ride by Lougher who started the race from second on the grid on the immaculate John Chapman Racing MV Agusta 500 alongside Guy Martin and Barry Davidson.
By the end of the second lap of the race Martin and Lougher had moved clear with Martin leading by almost three seconds, but a lap later Ian had reduced that gap by half a second and by the end of the next lap it was under two seconds.
Lougher was now on the move and was slowly but surely eating into Martin's advantage, and on the penultimate sixth lap he set what would be the fastest lap of the race at 86.576mph to move into the lead by 0.144s as they headed on to the last lap.
Martin was pressing hard but Ian wasn't going to be denied and he rode a cool and calculated final lap to not only defend his lead but extend it to 1.407s and take the chequered flag for a very popular win.
Team ILR's weekend had got off to a good start on Friday when Joe Loughlin rode well to finish 7th in the first Supersport race of the weekend, with the Castleblayney man also qualifying third in the Supertwins session with Lougher 10th.
Joe went one better in Saturday's second Supersport encounter when he finished sixth after an exciting dice with Paul Jordan with fractions of a second separating them at the line, and it was another great performance by Loughlin in the Supertwins A race when he overcame a deficit of over five seconds in third to claw his way back into contention and pip Adam McLean for second place on the last lap, with Lougher bringing the second Team ILR - Mark Coverdale Paton S1-R home in a secure 7th.
Unfortunately Loughlin's Armoy Road Races ended painfully when he crashed heavily during the warm-up lap for the Race of Legends feature race, Joe was airlifted to hospital where he received treatment for his injuries and was thankfully allowed home on Monday.
Everyone in the team wishes Joe a speedy recovery and looks forward to seeing him back in action soon.
Team ILR owner - manager Ian Lougher:
"It was sooooo nice to go racing again, Armoy is a tricky circuit and quite technical and the Paton was not easy to hang on to during the only practice session on Friday. So we made some changes to Joe's and my Paton, which thankfully worked well and the bike was much better behaved over the quite scary jumps on Saturday.
I think everyone should get another practice session to be able to get their bikes sorted out properly, which then makes it safer for all involved, otherwise you end up with red flag after red flag which is what we saw on Friday.
Starting in Group 2 on the twin I led the group for the entire race coming home in 7th place which was ok for an Old fella.
I was so pleased to give John Chapman a good result by winning the classic race, he has spent so much time and effort trying to make the beautiful MV Agusta 500 3 cylinder reliable, and winning the race AND beating Guy who's a great rider on a 750cc bike in the manner that we achieved, it was just the tonic that we needed to put a massive smile on his face."
"I had a great weekend with Team ILR/Mark Coverdale in Armoy.
Qualifying was ok with 3rd on the grid but a set up change by Ian transformed the bike and allowed me to clinch a last lap 2nd place on the lovely Paton S1-R.
I would like to thank the marshals, medics, Air Ambulance personnel, and the doctors and nurses in The Royal Victoria Hospital and anyone who tended to me after my crash, also thanks to everyone for all the well-wishes."
Brands Hatch Report
Team ILR made the trip to Kent at the weekend where Joe Loughlin again linked up with the team riding the Team ILR - Mark Coverdale R6 Yamaha in the British Supersport Championship.
Joe took things steady in practice and had good runs in both sessions and also in qualifying, with a 1:35.12 lap in the first practice session being his quickest over the course of the weekend.
Saturday's Sprint Race was delayed due to the incident in the previous British Superbike race which saw Brad Jones airlifted to hospital after crashing on the opening lap at Clark Curve, and everyone at Team ILR sends their best wishes to Brad and his family.
When the Supersport Sprint race did get underway it was quickly red flagged after just one lap due a competitor having mechainical trouble resulting in oil on the track.
With time fast running out and the race already behind schedule, race organisers decided to re-schedule until Sunday morning as the track curfew would have been breached otherwise.
Sunday saw damp conditions on the track and at the first attempt the race was red-flagged due to rain, but on the re-start Joe rode calmly and came home in an excellent 12th place to score four championship points and move up two rows on the grid for the Feature race in the afternoon in which he registered another championship point with a 15th place finish.
The team now turns its attention to the roads and the annual Armoy Road Races this weekend where Loughlin will be joined on the Team ILR - Mark Coverdale Patons by Ian Lougher in the Supertwins.
Ian will again link up with John Chapman at Armoy and will compete in the Classic 500 Race on John's iconic MV Agusta.
Joe will also be in action in the 600cc races on his own ZX6 Kawasaki.
Team ILR owner-manager Ian Lougher:
"Brands Hatch is quite a technical track to learn, so for Joe to arrive there without seeing the place before and then throw in the mixed conditions we experienced and come away with the results he achieved was excellent.
On top of that we experienced a few technical gremlins so his track time was cut short in FP2, which made his results even more pleasing for the team."
"I had another good weekend with Team ILR at Brands, and it's a great track to race on.
I was happy enough with my results, at this stage it is still a learning exercise for me at this level.
Once again the team were fantastic and I can't wait to get back on the Team ILR - Mark Coverdale Paton at Armoy.
Thanks to Ian, Asa, Mark, Jacko, Willie, my girlfriend Emma, my family and friends, and all my sponsors for their help and support."
Team ILR gears up for Brands Hatch and Armoy.
It's a busy few weeks ahead for Team ILR with a blend of short circuit and road racing action to look forward to.
First up is this weekend's British Superbikes meeting at Brands Hatch where the team will again run Joe Loughlin on the Team ILR - Mark Coverdale R6 Yamaha, with Loughlin looking to gain further experience in the British Supersport Championship and build on his two 14th place rides last time out at Oulton Park.
Another rider looking forward to returning to the team awning at Brands was National Junior Superstock rider James Alderson, unfortunately James badly injured his shoulder at Donington Park two weeks ago requiring surgery, and everyone at Team ILR wishes him a speedy recovery.
From Brands it's on to Armoy for the popular road race meeting where Loughlin will be joined by Ian Lougher, both will ride Team ILR - Mark Coverdale Patons.
This will be Lougher's second outing in 2021 following on from some strong rides on the Paton at the Spring Cup at Oliver's Mount.
Ian will again link up with John Chapman at Armoy and will compete in the Classic 500 Race on John's iconic MV Agusta, a bike he is no stranger to having rode it at the Classic TT on the Isle of Man.
Joe will also be in action in the 600cc races at Armoy on his own ZX6 Kawasaki.
You can keep up to speed with all the latest results and photos on the Team ILR facebook page https://www.facebook.com/IanLougherRacing and here on our website.
Oulton Park Report.
Team ILR were back in the BSB paddock with two young riders under the guidance of Ian Lougher, as the premier domestic championship season got underway at Oulton Park.
Back with the team was Castleblayney's Joe Loughlin who last raced for Team ILR at the same venue at the end of last season when he also had his first look at the Cheshire circuit, Loughlin was again on the Team ILR - Mark Coverdale R6 Yamaha in both the British Supersport Championship races.
Another young rider linking up at Oulton with Lougher and his experienced team was James Alderson who was competing in the National Junior Superstock class on his own 675 Triumph.
Free Practice on Friday was held in very tricky and challenging conditions and it brought mixed fortunes for both riders with Loughlin crashing whilst riding well, thankfully without injury.
Alderson meanwhile finished both sessions as third quickest just under half a second off the fastest time. Saturday's Qualifying would see Joe finish on the tenth row of the grid for the Supersport races with James putting in a great performance to put his Triumph on pole position for Saturday's Junior Superstock race.
Thankfully the dampness on Friday gave way to drier conditions for the rest of the weekend and Loughlin brushed off his practice crash to ride very well in both Supersport races to bring his times down and register two 14th place finishes which were great results both for himself and the team.
Meanwhile all Alderson's good work in qualifying didn't reap the rewards it deserved when he crashed out of second place in the first Junior Superstock race, he was uninjured but his bike was looking very second hand. A lot of hard work went into ensuring James made the second race, and he dusted himself down and repaid that hard work with a great sixth place ride with the fourth fastest lap of the race.
Team ILR owner - manager Ian Lougher:
"It was nice to return to the BSB paddock after some time away, but unfortunately we didn't get the best of the weather on the Friday, so Free Practice 1 was a little damp and Free Practice 2 was wet and very slippery. Joe was going well but unfortunately had a slip off in the wet but was thankfully unhurt.
For the two supersport races the weather was dry and Joe acquitted himself well, his times coming down and coming away with two 14th place finishes was very pleasing for the team.
Working with and mentoring James Alderson in the Junior Superstock 600 class was new to myself and the team and an experience the whole team enjoyed. James qualifying on pole position for the first time was a fantastic achievement for himself and his family who worked so hard over the weekend to support him.
Unfortunately on Lap 2 of the first race while sitting in 2nd place he had quite a quick crash at Turn 1 and the bike took a lot of repairing, mainly by his dad Stephen who worked well into Sunday morning to get it ready to race. So with no warm up session for the class James had to evaluate the machine on just the warm up lap, thankfully Stephen's hard work and great preparation paid off and James took a very hard fought 6th place finish in Race 2, and only 3 seconds from the win.
Thank you to all our sponsors and all the hard work put in by the team members, in what was not the easiest of weekends but one of the most a enjoyable. "
"I had another great weekend at Oulton Park after my first visit there last year, and enjoyed every bit of it.
It was also great working with Team ILR once again.
Despite crashing in Free Practice I had two 14th place finishes thanks to the great work of the team.
I had a great weekend's craic and gained more invaluable experience. "
"We were really excited for the opening round of the Bennetts British Superbikes at Oulton Park and to work with Ian from ILR and his team.
The weekend started out difficult with the weather on the test day being damp with rain showers throughout the day however ended the day P3 on combined times.
Saturday qualifying was looking good as the weather had improved massively and conditions were good, after a tyre change in pit lane I was feeling confident for a good last half of the session for a good grid spot for the afternoon race and managing a new PB 1.40.7 we claimed our first British championship pole position, with this we were feeling really good for the race.
Managing a good start I was in second place after the first lap however a small mistake cost us our chances as running into the first corner I lost the front, we were gutted to crash out of the race especially starting from pole position, when we got the bike back to our awning it was in a bad state, however giving up was not an option so after a late night and into the early hours of the morning rebuilding the bike for the second race we were feeling confident for a good result. Starting from 7th place on the third row I managed a great start and was in 6th place and on the back of the leading group, we managed to run a strong pace consistently throughout managing a 1.40.9 lap time and brought the bike home in one piece, after qualifying we were expecting a podium this weekend but after the crash on Saturday we didn't know if we would be back out on the Sunday and not having a warm up session in the morning the first time the bike was tested after being rebuilt was in the race.
All considered we've had a strong start to the season, massive thanks to Team ILR for a fantastic experience and support for our first round, we were honoured to be part of the team, massive thanks to all my sponsors as without them this wouldn't be possible."
Hind and Lougher in the mix at Spring Cup
It was a successful Spring Cup for Team ILR as the team made the familiar trip to Oliver's Mount for the return of the popular race meeting, with the team's talented Jim Hind again among the winners as he put in performances that belied his young age, and Ian Lougher put in some great performances on the Team ILR - Mark Coverdale S1-R Paton and was one of the busiest men in the paddock.
On only his third appearance at the circuit Hind won the overall award for the Supersport class and picked up two Supertwins race wins over the weekend.
This along with typically solid performances by renowned Oliver's Mount expert Ian Lougher provided the basis for a great weekend for Team ILR.
It was very slippery during practice on Saturday morning, but the early morning rain had thankfully stopped as the action proper began with Hind in action in the opening Supersport Heat over 5 laps, the race was won by Lee Johnston by 2.34 seconds from Mike Norbury with Jim in a very secure third a further 2.7s back on the Team ILR - Mark Coverdale ZX-6.
The first day also saw two heats for the Supertwins with Jim joined by his mentor Ian Lougher on Team ILR - Mark Coverdale S1-R Patons.
Jamie Coward took the first race by 8.1 seconds, Lougher meanwhile was riding a great race and he determinedly defended second place for four laps from Adam McLean before just losing out on the last lap. Hind was in action in the second heat and after a great race he took the win from Rob Hodson by the narrowest of margins with just 0.439s between the two at the flag.
Sunday's opening Supersport race saw Hind once again ride strongly on the 600.
With Lee Johnston clear at the front Jim slotted himself into 4th behind Dean Harrison and Dominic Herbertson. Harrison crashed out on the third lap as Hind set about closing the gap to second placed Hertbertson and within a lap he was right on his rear wheel as the battle for second began in earnest. Johnston took the win and the end of a frantic battle saw Herbertson just edge second from Hind by 0.06 seconds.
There was disappointment for Hind in the Feature Spring Cup race as rain before the start gave way to sunshine making tyre choice a lottery, and with Jim out on the warm-up lap on the wrong tyres the team took the sensible and safe decision to withdraw the ZX6 from the race.
The first of two Supertwins Group A races also ended in disappointment before it began as Hind and Lougher were both retirements after the warm-up lap, but they repaid the team's hard work in an exciting second encounter. From pole Adam McLean grabbed the lead with Mike Norbury, Hind and Lougher pressing hard.
On the second lap Jim grabbed second from Norbury with Ian close behind and the Welshman soon took third and move clear of Norbury as Hind began his challenge for the race win.
On the last lap Jim brilliantly made his move at Drury's Hairpin and went on to hold off Ulsterman McLean by 0.447 seconds for another Oliver's Mount win to add to his tally, with Ian bringing the second Paton home in a secure third.
Hind had another superb ride in the second Supersport Group A race.
With Dean Harrison dominating at the front, attention turned to the race for second with Jim involved in a great tussle with Herbertson, Norbury and Joey Thompson. It was a terrific race before Hind put time into them all to take second 3.4 seconds behind Harrison and 2.35s clear of third placed Norbury.
Jim's 20 points was enough to give him the Road Racing News Supersport A title and further cement his fast growing reputation as one of the Oliver's Mount star riders.
Hard work combined with great teamwork and great performances on the track had paid dividends for Team ILR at the Spring Cup, and the focus for the team now turns to short circuit action with a return to the BSB paddock at Oulton Park at the end of June where Joe Loughlin will ride the Team ILR - Mark Coverdale R6 Yamaha, with team boss Ian Lougher also mentoring James Alderson in the Junior Superstock on his 675 Triumph.
Team ILR owner - manager Ian Lougher:
"Oliver's Mount is always very challenging and this time was no different.
It was soooo nice just to be going racing again, even catching up with everybody from the various teams was a pleasure after such a long time.
The weather was fairly kind to us, only giving us a hard time just before the feature race where we chose wets instead of dry tyres for Jim's ZX6 Kawasaki.
The sun came out so Jim had no choice but to retire to the paddock after the warm up lap.
Jim is a star in the making and we all at Team ILR/Mark Coverdale thoroughly enjoy working with him.
His results get better and better and on only his third visit to the track he claimed the 600 class win overall.
His win in the second twins race was just a measure of his versatility too...mega.
For myself I felt I rode well considering not sitting on a bike for 8 months and was pleased with my results, but it was a shame we both suffered a small mechanical issue in the first twins race which lead to our retirement.
A big thank you to Mark and all our team for working so hard over the weekend, and a massive thanks to the organisers and marshals for putting on a great meeting. "
"Another fantastic weekend working with Team ILR once again, it is a faultless operation that they run and I really can't thank Ian and the team enough.
It was just good, a chilled out time, with lots learned and plenty of quick racing done in the process. "
Lougher and Hind To Race At Spring Cup
Team ILR's owner - manager Ian Lougher and Jim Hind are both set to return to Oliver's Mount at the forthcoming Spring Cup meeting.
Hind was impressive last year when he made his only two appearances to date around the iconic 2.41 miles of England's only roads circuit. And at last year's Gold Cup he showed why he is being tipped for the top as he put all three of his bikes on pole during qualifying and consistently lapped among the front runners all weekend on what was only his second visit to the circuit following his debut there just three weeks previously.
Over the course of the weekend Jim came away with no fewer than six podiums including a 2 & 4 Stroke double win, a fourth in the feature Gold Cup race and some impressive rides in the Supersport class, greatly impressing team boss and mentor Ian Lougher in the process.
As in 2020, Hind will again have the Team ILR - Mark Coverdale S1-R Paton and ZX-6R Kawasaki at his disposal.
Oliver's Mount specialist Ian Lougher holds the record for the number of race wins around Oliver's Mount and he will also be competing on one of the team's Patons at the Spring Cup.
This, along with mentoring and supporting young Hind, will ensure that the ever popular Welshman will once again be kept busy behind the scenes as well as on track.
Last year's outings at Oliver's Mount also provided Ian with the ideal opportunity to develop the S1-R Paton in readiness for 2021.
The 2021 Oliver's Mount Spring Cup takes place over the weekend of Saturday 22nd and Sunday 23rd May.
Solid Debut for Loughlin at Oulton Park
Team ILR brought the curtain down on a Covid 19 decimated race season with a return to the British Supersport Championship paddock after a year's absence.
In the close season team owner-manager Ian Lougher and main sponsor Mark Coverdale had decided to take the team in a different direction in 2020 by cutting back on BSB participation and choosing instead to concentrate the team's efforts on the pure roads.
However in keeping with the team's ethos of rider development, both were pleased to support exciting Irish rider Joe Loughlin in his BSB debut, his second appearance with the team having rode brilliantly in Team ILR colours at the 2019 Ulster Grand Prix.
Loughlin's first appearance at BSB coincided with his first look at the Oulton Park circuit and as a result both he and the team viewed the meeting as an experience building exercise.
With advice from team boss Lougher, Joe took things steady from the off and had a good solid run in Free Practice 1 finishing in 18th, in the second session he improved by almost 1.5 seconds and qualifying saw him go faster by another second so he was certainly moving in the right direction.
Loughlin then had a good Sprint race, and knocked yet another second off his best lap time as he came from the tenth row of the grid to finish just outside the points in 16th.
Unfortunately Joe's Oulton adventure came to an early end in Sunday's Feature race when he came to grief at the Turn One right hander at Old Hall, thankfully without injury.
Team ILR owner-manager Ian Lougher:
"We had planned with Joe to contest the Oulton BSB meeting in May in readiness for the forthcoming North West 200 and TT events, to help get him up to speed, but because of Covid the May meeting got cancelled and we decided to take in the September races instead.
To be fair I probably pushed Joe into doing it a little as there's a long time before next year's North West, but it was a great opportunity to see how hard and fast the BSB pace is..there aren't any slow riders there. So it was straight in at the deep end for Joe with learning a new track and all aspects of the BSB regime, but he took to it brilliantly, learning fast, going roughly a second a lap faster each time out on track.
I was impressed with him and all the team really enjoyed working with him.
Unfortunately he took a tumble in his last race but luckily was unhurt, but he bettered his times once again, so was pleased with his progress."
"I had a great weekend at Oulton Park and enjoyed every bit of it.
The track was great to ride especially with the good weather we got.
We had a good result in the first race and was surprised with the times I got down to on my first time there.
The team were faultless and it's a pity that I had a crash in the last race, but we will be back next year all going well.
Thanks to Mark Coverdale, Ian, Asa, Jacko, Willy, Danny and all my loyal sponsors for giving me the opportunity to race in a BSB event which I thought I'd never be able to do."
Fresh from a successful outing at the Barry Sheene Classic at Oliver's Mount three weeks ago, Team ILR duo Ian Lougher and Jim Hind return to North Yorkshire this weekend to compete at the annual Gold Cup meeting.
Both will again be on the immaculate Team ILR - Mark Coverdale S1-R Patons which were used to great effect last time out with Lougher scoring a race win to take his all-time Oliver's Mount winner's record to 141, he also registered third and fourth place finishes to show he is still very much at the cutting edge.
Circuit and fastest newcomer Hind was a revelation at the Barry Sheene Classic, on top of race wins in the 250 class Jim had second, third and fourth place results on the Paton as well as giving a good account of himself in the Supersport class on the Team ILR - Mark Coverdale Kawasaki ZX-6R, a bike he will again ride this weekend.
The Gold Cup is the first of two meetings over the coming weeks for the team with a return to the British Supersport Championship paddock pencilled in one week later at Oulton Park where another exciting young prospect Joe Loughlin returns to the team to compete on the Team ILR - Mark Coverdale R6 Yamaha.
This will be Loughlin's first visit to the Cheshire circuit and his debut at a BSB meeting, but like Hind he has proven in the past that he is a quick learner, and he is familiar with the team and its personnel having worked with Team ILR at last year's Ulster GP where he came so close to wins in both Supertwin races.
Lougher raises the bar as newcomer Hind impresses at Oliver's Mount
Ian Lougher raised the Oliver's Mount circuit all-time winners record to a remarkable 141 wins with victory on the Team ILR - Mark Coverdale Paton S1-R in the second Supertwins race, as road racing resumed in challenging conditions at the three-day Barry Sheene Classic meeting.
The Welshman also registered third and fourth place finishes in the other 'twins races, and this along with some fine rides by young circuit newcomer Jim Hind, capped a satisfying weekend for Team ILR.
With the invaluable advice and assistance of Lougher in his corner and totally unfazed by unfamiliar machinery, a new circuit, and a lengthy delay to proceedings on the first day due to persistent mist, young Hind quickly got to grips with the twisty Scarborough course.
On the team's ZX-6R Kawasaki he qualified for the Supersport A class as well as setting fifth fastest time in the Supertwins, with Lougher on another Team ILR - Mark Coverdale Paton slotting nicely into third place in the timesheets.
Saturday saw two Supertwins races with the first being red-flagged after the opening few laps.
On the shortened restart, it was Jamie Coward who took the honours from Dominic Herbertson with Ian taking the final podium spot in third, and Jim riding brilliantly to bring the other Paton home in fourth.
The second race also fell victim to an early red-flag but this time on the re-start it was a determined Lougher who quickly hit the front and, despite a strong challenge from Herbertson and Coward, Ian wasn't to be denied as he rode strongly to take the chequered flag for win number 141!
Meanwhile in the Supersport 600's Hind gave a good account of himself to finish the day with two soild Top 8 rides, with fifth in the opening race being a particular highlight.
Day Two saw changeable weather and again two Supertwins and Supersport races for the team.
In the opening Supertwins race on a wet track Ian uncharacteristically slid off without injury on the first lap at Drury's Hairpin leaving Jim to take up the Team ILR challenge, and this he did admirably with a superb ride to finish second behind TT Privateers Champion Coward and ahead of the experienced and talented Herbertson.
Race Two saw a great tussle develop between Lougher and his young protege Hind with the only two Paton riders in the race having a great battle for third.
With Coward clear at the front, it was Hind who eventually got clear with two laps to go to claim third less than a second behind Herbertson with Ian settling for fourth.
Hind capped a great Oliver's Mount debut with another excellent ride to finish 7th in the second Supersport A race of the day to also complete a very satisfying weekend for the team.
Over the course of the weekend Jim was fastest newcomer and sixth quickest overall with a lap of 1.51.297 in the second Supersport race on the Team ILR - Mark Coverdale Kawasaki ZX-6R.
Ian meanwhile was 12th quickest overall with a lap in the Supertwins of 1.54.566 on the Team ILR - Mark Coverdale Paton S1-R.
A great effort by the whole team!
In closing the thoughts and condolences of everyone at Team ILR are with the family and friends of Jeff Ward.
Jeff was involved in a non-racing-related medical emergency after the Supertwin qualifying session on Friday afternoon and sadly passed away the following day.
Team ILR owner-manager Ian Lougher:
"It's fair to say after a lengthy wait to see if the racing would return to Oliver's Mount, that everybody was so pleased to get back in the paddock and out on track.
I felt quite good from the off on our Team ILR/Mark Coverdale Paton qualifying 3rd.
I went on to have some decent results over the weekend, but the plus point for me was working with our new team rider Jim Hind.
The 20 yr old from Lincolnshire was a newcomer to Scarborough but impressed everybody including me with his ability to learn a new circuit in the most difficult of conditions and listen to everyone in his quest to improve his riding.
He rode our 650 Paton and Kawasaki ZX6, both machines being new to him without breaking a sweat ...mega.
A big thank-you must go to the Oliver's Mount organisers who have worked so hard to get the racing going again, and a massive thank-you to all our sponsors, especially our main sponsor Mark Coverdale who has given us so much support."
"I have really enjoyed my time at Oliver's Mount, I was a little apprehensive about the weekend but Team ILR and my family helped the weekend run spot on.
It was my first time on a Kawasaki Zx6 and really liked it, and the Paton was the first twin machine for me to ride and a beautiful bike to ride.
I can't wait to come back for the Gold Cup in September.
Thank-you to Ian and the team for making me feel so at home."
Above is just some of the feedback from some of the good folks who were in attendance.
You can keep up to date with the latest news on our Facebook page and hopefully we'll see you all in 2021.
Watch this space!!
Learn from one of the best and hone your riding skills to the highest level at the Ian Lougher Track Days at Pembrey in Wales, where you will be under the guidance of ten times TT winner and widely acknowledged racing legend Ian Lougher.
Sign-on at 7:30 ~
Briefing at 8:00 ~
Sessions from 9:00 - 17:00
Lunch break from 12:30 - 13:30
3 groups (Expert, Intermediate and Novice)
6 sessions for each group
(each session 20 mins)
Cost: (*Track Day Discount is available for Ian Lougher Racing Supporters Club members*)
One Day £126 (including VAT)
Two Days £245 (including VAT)
To apply for booking please email
Membership is now open for the official Ian Lougher Racing (Team ILR) Supporters Club for 2020.
You can now show your support for your favourite race team by becoming a member, or by becoming a Team Sponsor.
Membership entitles you to receive discount for our 2020 Track Days in April (4th/5th) and August (1st/2nd) at Pembrey in Wales, where you will be under the guidance of ten times TT winner and widely acknowledged and respected racing legend Ian Lougher.
You will also receive discount on Team ILR merchandise, as well as receiving an invitation to join our dedicated Supporters Club Facebook page and to our 2020 team party at a special price.
Membership starts from £120
Team ILR SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITIES 2020
Packages available from £600.
In a road racing season decimated by the global COVID-19 pandemic, Team ILR will have its first competitive outing of the year at this weekend's Barry Sheene Classic meeting at Oliver's Mount, Scarborough.
The most successful rider in the history of racing at Oliver's Mount Ian Lougher will be joined by exciting circuit newcomer Jim Hind for the 3-Day event, and the young Lincolnshire rider will no doubt avail himself of all the help and advice he will receive from Team ILR owner/manager Lougher.
Both will pilot the immaculate Team ILR/Mark Coverdale 650 Patons with Hind also competing on the Team ILR/Mark Coverdale ZX-6 Supersport machine in the 600 class.
The young rising star met with Ian Lougher earlier this year and had pencilled in further appearances with the team in 2020 before the pandemic curtailed those plans, however the 20 year old is also lining up an appearance at the popular end of season Gold Cup meeting at the historic North Yorkshire circuit.
A lot of hard work has gone on behind the scenes and everyone involved is to be commended for their efforts in ensuring that racing takes place this weekend.
Team ILR owner-manager Ian Lougher ~
"I'm delighted to have the opportunity to work with Jim Hind, a young rider who came to my attention at the 2019 Manx GP where he impressed me with not only his obvious ability but also his calm, unassuming nature and hard work ethic, traits that I look for in our team's riders.
At Team ILR we are known for supporting, nurturing and developing young talent, and Jim fits in with our team ethos perfectly.
As always, we will give him 100% support in the next natural progression of his career."
Jim Hind ~
"I'm really excited to be linking up with Ian Lougher and Team ILR at Oliver's Mount.
To work alongside someone of Ian's standing in the sport is an incredible opportunity and one that I know will take my racing to another level in terms of what I will learn from him. I can't wait!"
2020 Team News
Team ILR are pleased to announce that they will once again team up with two riders from the 2019 season Joe Loughlin and Masayuki Yamanaka, along with Stefano Bonetti and James Hind as the team sets its sights on the 2020 race season.
Loughlin will pilot the Team ILR - Mark Coverdale Paton Supertwin and Yamaha R6 at the North-West 200, Isle of Man TT and Ulster Grand Prix (subject to it taking place) as well as a few selected races leading up to the NW200.
The young rider from Castleblayney was a sensation on the Paton at Dundrod in 2019 when he finished second in two thrilling Lightweight races by under one hundredth of a second to Paul Jordan and Christian Elkin respectively, and lapping at over 119mph.
The highly experienced Stefano Bonetti is no stranger to race fans, and in 2019 the Italian National Anthem rang out around the famous Portstewart-Coleraine-Portrush Triangle circuit for the first time in the 90-year history of the North-West 200 when he took the honours with a superb ride in the Supertwin race.
The fastest Italian to have ever lapped the 37.73-mile Mountain Course will also race a Team ILR - Mark Coverdale Paton at the North-West 200, the TT and the Ulster GP, and he will no doubt be hoping to give a good account of himself as he looks to repeat his 2019 North-West win and also build on his 6th place finish in the 2019 Lightweight TT.
In James Hind the sport undoubtedly has a new star.
Following a Mountain Circuit debut in 2018 in which he was second in the Newcomers Manx GP, 2019 saw the 19 year old make the break-through with a brilliant brace of wins in both Manx Grand Prix Lightweight races, as well as a third place ride in the Lightweight Classic TT behind Bruce Anstey and Davey Todd.
He was also leading the Junior Manx GP race until his Yamaha R6 developed an oil leak, but not before he had set a new lap record with a speed of 121.77mph from a standing start, and he also led the Senior Manx GP on the opening lap until the R6 developed a throttle problem at Ballaugh Bridge.
In 2020, James will return to the Island for his Isle of Man TT debut, and he too will have a Team ILR - Mark Coverdale Paton at his disposal for the Lightweight TT.
Returning to the TT with Team ILR is Masayuki Yamanaka.
The Japanese rider took full advantage of Ian Lougher and his team's experience at the 2019 TT to ride well in the second Supersport TT and register his fastest lap around the TT course with a speed of 115.659mph.
Masayuki impressed everyone in the team with his preparation and attention to detail, and his infectious smile will be a welcome sight as he again competes at the 2020 races on the Team ILR - Mark Coverdale ER6 and Supersport ZX6 Kawasakis.
Lougher at the Double
Team ILR owner/manager Ian Lougher took his record tally of race wins at Oliver's Mount to an incredible 140 when he returned to the circuit for the first time in two years following the abandonment of the 2017 Gold Cup, which subsequently saw road racing suspended at the famous North Yorkshire venue until former racers Mick Grant and Eddie Roberts, and the newly formed Two Four Three Road Racing Association stepped in to revive it in 2019.
Lougher was entered in both the Lightweight races on one of the potent Team ILR - Mark Coverdale S1R Patons and he was immediately on the pace in practice and qualifying on Saturday morning to set himself up nicely for the first race in the afternoon.
In one of the best races of the weekend, Ian took the initiative in the early stages as he moved past pole sitter and early leader Brad Vicars and settled in to defend his lead from Vicars, Dominic Herbertson and former protege Joey Thompson.
Vicars then dropped out of contention and eventually retired leaving a three rider battle for the win with Lougher displaying all his race guile, and using the speed of the Paton, to hold off a fierce challenge from Herbertson and Thompson.
The experienced Welshman wasn't going to be denied as he recorded the fastest lap of the race on the last lap to claim his 139th win at Scarborough by two bike lengths from Herbertson who took second on the Cowton Racing Kawasaki by a similar margin from Kramer mounted Thompson.
Just over half a second covered the three riders.
In contrast to Saturday's sunshine, Sunday saw low cloud, mist and rain descend on the seaside resort causing a delay to proceedings, and it was 4.30pm and still raining when the Lightweights came to the grid for the final race of the meeting.
This time it was Thompson who got a flyer but Lougher was soon on his case and he took the lead and proceeded to stamp his authority on the race to open up a gap to Vicars and Herbertson.
Ian and the Paton were unstoppable, and he stretched his lead to take the chequered flag by just over seven seconds and further cement his place in the Oliver's Mount history books with win number 140.
"After two years since my last visit to Scarborough I was feeling very pleased and excited to be back to be honest, as I've had some great races and many fond memories there.
Unfortunately at the eleventh hour due to noise restrictions we had to fit a quieter exhaust system, and with no time to refuel the bike on a Dyno I was expecting a very lame Paton.
But I was pleasantly surprised as the bike didn't seem to have lost any performance.
Saturday's race was close so it was a case of getting good starts, keeping concentration and getting past the backmarkers at the right time.
Sunday was very wet but I always enjoy those conditions and feel I rode well considering I don't ride very much these days.
Huge credit and thanks goes to everyone in the team over the weekend, and also to the organisers, marshals and spectators."
Classic TT Report
Team ILR's ten times Isle of Man TT winner Ian Lougher paid his second visit to the island in 2019 to take part in the Classic TT races.
As in previous years, Ian again teamed up with LayLaw Racing's Eddie Laycock and Gerry Lawlor to ride their TZ 250 Yamaha in the Lightweight Classic TT, and in the Senior Classic TT event Ian was once again entrusted to compete on the iconic MV Agusta owned by John Chapman.
Practice week could best be described as something of a non-event, with bad weather blighting the practice programme and leaving very little in the way of track time and bike set-up.
A few sessions did manage to survive the weather however, with the Yamaha going well and Lougher near the top of the Lightweight leaderboard.
Senior practice was a different story however with the MV struggling, and Ian having the misfortune to stop twice and not get a complete lap in.
Better weather thankfully arrived for race week, but the hard-working and professionally run John Chapman team had faced a race against time on the MV and unfortunately had to withdraw from the Senior Classic TT on Saturday afternoon, as Ian set his sights on the Lightweight Classic TT in the evening.
Riding at Number 3, he soon settled into his trademark steady rhythm on the first of the three lap race, as Bruce Anstey set a blistering pace to lead the race at Glen Helen, where Lougher went through the first timing point in fifth place.
Ian pitted at the end of the first lap and the layLaw Racing team superbly and efficiently got him up and running again in one of the fastest pit-stops of the race at just over 40 seconds.
The Welshman was riding brilliantly and was now up to third, just 15 seconds behind Davey Todd as the lights showed for the riders at Cronk ny Mona on Lap Two.
Going on to the final lap, Lougher still held third and was 8 seconds up on Jamie Coward, but the threat from behind was now coming from a hard charging James Hind who had earlier received a time penalty for a pit-stop infringement.
As they reached Ballaugh, Hind was now fourth just 3.4 seconds down on Ian and by the time they reached Ramsey Hairpin Hind had moved into third and he held on over the Mountain section to clinch the last podium spot from Ian who brought the LayLaw Racing Yamaha home in a secure fourth, but it had taken the fastest lap of the last circuit by Classic TT revelation Hind to overhaul Lougher.
So a mixed Classic TT bag for Ian Lougher with the disappointment of a non-start in the Senior TT made up for by a fine ride in the Lightweight race.
"The Classic TT is a meeting I really look forward to, it's not just that I get to ride two brilliant proper racing machines, but also get to work alongside two fantastic groups of people, with Laylaw Racing and John Chapman Racing.
I felt so sorry for John and the guys that we couldn't get to even start the Classic 500 race this time, after having a number of issues with the MV 500 in practice, but after a weather torn and short practice week unfortunately we were up against it to get the bike ready in time. Hopefully next time..!!!
The 250cc (Lightweight) is probably the best machine for me, it's a hard class to get the best out of the engine, carburation wise, but the most rewarding when things come together.
The Laylaw Yamaha TZ250 is a great bike and this time I think Eddie and the rest of the guys got it nearer than ever with the jetting, but although I felt I rode well I finished 4th and off the rostrum....sorry chaps.!!
But the most pleasing sight...even though I couldn't stand up there with him, was seeing Bruce back on a bike and climbing to the top...lost for words.
I'd like to thank all the people who worked alongside myself and Asa over the fortnight, we might not have won but we always have great craic."
Team ILR owner-manager.
10th - 14th May
I am sure that their success will continue.''