Two wheels good, four wheels better: rallycross drive for John McGuinness

John McGuinness to make a guest appearance at the British Rallycross Championship at Knockhill in September

John McGuinness and Chris Hoy next to Pat Doran's Citroen C4 Rallycross car

McGuinness (left) and Hoy with Doran’s Citroën C4

Motorcycle road-racing legend John McGuinness will be making a guest appearance in the British Rallycross Championship at Knockhill next month (Sept 26/27) – and hasn’t ruled out doing more after his bike career winds down. He will race a Citroën C4 owned by Lydden Hill boss – and BRX promoter – Pat Doran.

“I’m not yet finished with bikes,” 23-time Isle of Man TT winner McGuinness said, “but I can’t carry on road racing forever. I did a deal with Bournemouth Kawasaki for the 2020 season because it felt right and I’m also contesting the Ducati TriOptions Cup at British Superbike meetings. The planets seem to have lined up a bit. I never wanted to end my career with an accident like the one I had during the North-West 200 in 2017. I ended up on a golf course – and I hate golf! I was lying there [with serious leg injuries] thinking, ‘I’m not ending my career on a golf course’. I want to bow out of the sport on my own terms, but I’m now getting to an age – 48, though I feel 28 – where I should perhaps start to think about swapping to cars if some opportunities arise.”

He admits his rallycross learning curve will be almost vertical, given his relative lack of experience: “I have done a bit of karting and I tested Gordon Shedden’s BTCC Honda Civic at Knockhill four years ago, but rallycross? I know only what I’ve seen on TV, so not a lot. I’m in at the deep end. I’ve done 50,000-odd miles around the Isle of Man at decent speeds, but this is all absolutely new. So long as I enjoy it and don’t embarrass myself, that’s fine, but I know it will be bloody difficult.”

Doran has already signed up six-time Olympic cycling gold medallist Sir Chris Hoy to take a turn in his C4, at Lydden Hill in August during the first of four rounds in the new BRX season.