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The Relentless International North West 200 is Ireland’s largest outdoor sporting event, attracting crowds in excess of 100,000 as well as the biggest names in the sport including Michael Rutter, Guy Martin, Ryan Farquhar and Michael and William Dunlop. Taking place annually in May, the Relentless International North West 200 circuit runs between the towns of Portrush, Portstewart and Coleraine – an area of outstanding natural beauty and home to the world famous Giant’s Causeway.
 
 
The triangle circuit is one of the fastest in the world, and 2010's event saw Stuart Easton from Scotland smash the fastest speed record by reaching 204mph!
 
 
Many people ask why the North West 200 is called the North West 200. The answer lies in the spawning of the event. History reveals that although the Club’s original choice of name for the race remained, their original choice of venue did not. The name has continued to generate some confusion amongst those who are unaware of the event’s origins. The inclusion of “200” simply indicates that the event was originally run over a distance of 200 miles. “North West”, reflects the original intended, location of the race, i.e. on a public roads course in the North West of Ireland.
 
 

The North West 200’s first organisers could not have imagined how the event would grow over the years. In 1964, the North West 200 event was handed over to the Coleraine & District Motor Club which continues to run the event today. In 2007, around two million people logged on from nearly every part of the world to watch what has become Ireland’s largest sporting event and one of the world’s fastest road races.

International North West 200 organisers, Coleraine & District Motor Club Ltd have confirmed that next year’s Race Day will take place on Saturday 19th May 2012 following ratification by governing body, the Motor Cycling Union of Ireland (MCUI) during November.

Technical director Mervyn Whyte MBE recently completed a series of discussions with BSB and DORNA organisers and World Endurance teams to ensure the NW200 didn’t clash with key international racing schedules following last year’s unavoidable absence of HM Plant Honda stars John McGuinness and Keith Amor who were set to compete in World Endurance in Albacete, Spain.

Following Coleraine & District Motor Club’s presentation and proposal to Coleraine Borough Council, consultation will get underway next week in terms of proposed daytime practice on Tuesday 15th May and additional evening racing on Thursday May 17th.  Detailed letters will be delivered to all residents located in and around the course and local people will be invited to respond to NW200 organisers by Tuesday 15th November.

Outlining proposed plans Mervyn Whyte said, “We aim to close the 8.9 mile circuit roads on Tuesday and Thursday from 9.30am until 2.30pm providing substantial time for practice including valuable newcomer sessions.

To expand our race programme and broaden the appeal to fans, we hope to introduce two exciting races on the Thursday evening – a Superstock event followed by a Supertwins Race – with roads set to close 5.30pm to 9pm. We believe the new revitalised programme will attract additional spectators and add a little more live action to our Race Week schedule. The addition of the Supertwins race is a first for the North West 200 and we will be following the same regulations as the Isle of Man TT who are also set to introduce a Supertwins class for the first time in 2012.”

Whyte also confirmed that Saturday’s 2012 Race Day programme will follow last year’s schedule and feature five races - two superbike and two Supersport races as well as the Superstock class.  A new aggregate points system will also apply to  both the Thursday and Saturday Superstock races.

Visit www.northwest200.org for up to date race details and information on proposed Race Week expansion plans.

Getting there

Accommodation

Staff at Coleraine & Ballymoney Tourist Information Centres will be happy to help you find accommodation. Please contact them with your travel dates, the number of people in your group and the type of accommodation you would prefer eg. hotel, bed and breakfast, self-catering or hostel.

A search is then carried out on your behalf and staff will contact you with availability. If you decide to book there is a £2.00 booking fee and in order to secure the accommodation a 10% deposit applies to serviced bookings and a minimum of 1/3 deposit for self-catering. These can by paid by Mastercard or VISA and the deposit is deducted off your final bill.

Coleraine Tourist Information Centre
Tel: 0044 28 7034 4723
Fax: 0044 28 7035 1756
E-mail: info@northcoastni.com
Website: http://www.northcoastni.com/

Ballymoney Tourist Information Centre
Tel: 0044 28 27660230
E-mail: touristinfo@ballymoney.gov.uk
Website: http://www.visitballymoney.com/