Darryl Tweed's Isle of Man TT dream in tatters after promises of financial help prove hollow

Ballymoney rider Darryl Tweed’s hopes of making his Isle of Man TT debut have been dashed only days before the first practice session is due to take place around the Mountain Course on Sunday.

By Kyle White
Tuesday, 24th May 2022, 2:08 pm
Updated Tuesday, 24th May 2022, 2:11 pm

Tweed rode for Northern Ireland’s Wilson Craig Racing team at the North West 200 after he was thrown a lifeline by owner Darren Gilpin.

However, the Manx Grand Prix winner is currently unable to contest the TT after Tweed was let down when promises of financial support from several would-be sponsors ultimately proved hollow.

Wilson Craig team boss Gilpin was able to support Tweed at the North West, but explained that the team’s budget would not stretch to running a second rider alongside Yorkshireman Joey Thompson at the event without additional finances.

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Darryl Tweed on the Wilson Craig Honda Supersport machine at the North West 200.

“We had thrown a bit of a lifeline to Darryl Tweed at the North West 200 and had agreed to give him a bike for the TT, but unfortunately he’s been let down by some sponsors,” Gilpin said.

“I was really pleased with how he went at the North West, considering he had never rode the Supersport bike before.

“We did a last-minute deal for the TT but Darryl hasn’t made it over. He was supposed to be on the same boat as us, but unfortunately he’s been let down.

“We actually have a brand new 600 Honda sitting prepared for him in the paddock. He’s a Manx Grand Prix winner and this would have been his TT debut, so his head is down a bit and he’s obviously very disappointed,” added Gilpin.

“I was able to help him out and run him at the NW200, but for the TT he would have to contribute something to the kitty, and that’s the same with every rider.

“I’d love to be in a position financially were money didn’t matter, but that’s not the case and we’re still in our infancy with the team.

“I was really angry when I heard what had happened because Darryl had been promised financial help and now he’s been badly let down.

“Everybody was really pleased with how Darryl conducted himself within the team at the North West and we were all looking forward to having him at the TT,” said Gilpin.

“There’s still some time so maybe he can get a bit of help to get over here and make his debut.”

A dejected Tweed said he had “put my heart and soul into making my dream a reality”.

“Unfortunately, because of financial reasons and letdowns I will not be attending this year’s TT,” said Tweed.

“I have tried hard and put my heart and soul into making my dream a reality, but it’s not to be this year.

“I’m planning to make it back and get sorted for some of the local races later in the year, but I can’t promise I’ll make it back to the grid and I’ll have to see what happens.

“It’s a real kick in the teeth for me and my team.”

Tweed finished 14th in the first Supersport race at the North West 200 and 20th in race two.