Phillip McCallen’s classic bike festival forced to cancel for second year due to continuing impact of pandemic


Phillip McCallen’s Classic Bike Festival Ireland has been canceled for the second year in a row due to the continued impact of Covid-19 restrictions.

Anointedly hosted by Irish road racing legend McCallen and Robin Titterington, the festival was set to feature classic racing for the first time this year, in addition to parade tours and displays of rare classic racing machines.

The two-day event at the Bishopscourt Racing Circuit in Co Down was scheduled to take place August 14-15.

First held in 2019, the festival proved to be an instant hit with motorcycle fans across the racing spectrum.

McCallen, the eleven-time Isle of Man TT winner, was eager to expand the event this summer, adding classic races to the schedule, but for the second year in a row the coronavirus pandemic has forced organizers to postpone their plans until 2022.

McCallen said: “We were hoping to come back bigger and better this year with classic races at Bishopscourt as well as demonstrations and parade tricks.

“We wanted to have Junior and Senior classes, but unfortunately we can’t go ahead now due to the situation we find ourselves in.

“I don’t see the regulations allowing large crowds in August, and it just wouldn’t be financially viable to hold the event without a large number of spectators,” he added.

“We also have an issue where many of the best classic bikes wouldn’t be available because there is no Classic TT this year, so the owners of these world-class machines haven’t prepared for this event.

“We plan to come back bigger and better next year when things are hopefully in a much better place.”

McCallen said the ideal 2022 scenario would be to hold the festival the weekend before the Ulster Grand Prix, although doubts remain as to whether or not the race will return to Dundrod.

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