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FLYAN RYAN SAYS @ NW200 Belfast Telegraph wrote:
A trip on the Chaplain’s ‘tea and biscuit bus’ certainly wouldn’t be on every rider’s pre-race itinerary with less than 24 hours to go before the opening race at the North West 200, but maverick racer Ryan ‘Fireman’ Farquhar, strangely enough, uses it as a way of relaxation.
“The Chaplains have been asking me to go on the bus run since ’96 but as things go, I always thought I was too busy on the Friday before race day the North West, explained the KMR Kawasaki pilot. I decided to take it in this last two years as big Noel [Rev Noel Agnew] is great craic and it’s a good chance to get away from the pits for an hour or two and spend time with Karen and the girls.”
Farquhar, a three time Supersport winner at the North West 200, has taken on a ‘new state of calm’ since his split with his former employers McAdoo Racing, just after last year’s North West festival, and that new, happy go lucky attitude, brought about his record success at last year’s TT races.
While Farquhar’s heart may beat a little slower these days, and there’s a speckling of silver creeping into his thinning locks, the Killyman resident certainly isn’t going soft.
Already this year, metaphorically speaking, he’s compared fellow racer Keith Amor to a digestive biscuit, insinuating in good humour, that the Falkirk rider crumbles under pressure.
Farquhar’s famous one-liners and droll Mid Ulster dialect have broken many riders, even before the action has commenced.
He’s certainly focused and single minded, but his change of attitude and ‘happy chappy’ approach, in my opinion, makes him an ever bigger danger to his rivals this weekend.
“I’ve qualified as well as I’ve ever done at the North West and while I’ve a few changes to make, like adding higher screens to my bikes and maybe altering the gearing? I have to admit I’m happy enough,” explained the father of two.
Farquhar has always been a bit of a rainmeister, and while modern wet weather tyres have inspired more than him to go quick in years gone by at the Triangle, he’s probably the only rider in the 2009 line-up, who would love to hear it rattling off the bedroom window of his rented Atlantic coast property on Saturday morning.
“You know I don’t mind the rain,” he explained.
“In fact I’m hoping it’s going to be wet on Saturday. I’ll maybe get the chance to set the bikes up for the wet tonight if the forecast is correct but there’s no pressure on me. I’ll leave that to the factory boys; that’s why I run my own set-up these days. I just want to enjoy my racing and maybe get a few quid to pay the bills. If I’m in this frame of mind on Saturday who knows what I can achieve; if it all falls into place great, if not I’ll just pack up and head for the TT