MOTORCYCLE ace Stuart Easton will tomorrow spearhead the first public campaign to launch a top-level road race in his local area.
The Teri superbikes racer will be on hand in Jedburgh to promote the Borders Race of the Reivers, a proposed three-day event that organisers say could generate up to £20.6million for local charities and businesses.
As well as the potential for a financial boost to Hawick and the surrounding area, local motorsport fans would have the opportunity to watch some of Britain’s best bikers in action on their doorstep, with the proposed route following the A698 from Ancrum towards Denholm until turning left before Spittal-on-Rule towards the Dunion Hill.
For Easton, the prospect of competing on his home patch is appetising.
“The Borders has been huge for motorsport – both cars and bikes – forever,” said Easton, 29. “Jim Clark, Jimmie Guthrie, and Steve Hislop are big names.
“Whenever I’ve raced in Ireland, you get the local riders and it’s a big deal for them. To have a race here, ten miles from Hawick, would be special.
“I spoke to a few of the guys, John McGuinness and Guy Martin, who said if it does run it would be great.”
Mark Degnan, one of three men behind the staging of the event, said the race could provide an economic boon to the area and cited the Isle of Man TT as proof that such an event could become even bigger in future.
He added: “Potentially, if all goes well and we get the figures, we could bring £20.6million into the area. Anything between 50-100,000 people would be looking for somewhere to stay, somewhere to eat and the economic impact could stretch from Berwick to Dalkeith.”
A series of events from 9am-5pm at the Glebe car park are being held to promote the idea of the race.
Easton himself will take part in a meet-and-greet with members of the public, while Kevin Carmichael, four-time World Stunt Champion, is set to wow the crowds with an exhibition of tricks.