Jason Meara has won two championships already this season but is now locked in a titanic duel with Glenn McCormick for the Ulster MX2 championship with just one round to go after a dramatic penultimate round at Laurelbnk.
In addition Meara was deservedly chosen as an MX2 reserve for the MXoN but as a consequence has controversially not been selected for the Coupe de l’Avenir.
We caught up with Jason to discuss the Ulster championship battle and missing out on both the MXoN and the Coupe de l’Avenir.
Gatedrop: Good day for you at the Ulster championship and the Brian Bell at Laurelbank.. Can you talk me through your day?
Jason Meara: The day all said and done was a good day, of course there was some frustration with getting a front wheel puncture in moto 2. I was unable to control the bike so I signalled to my brother on the side of the track to get me a front wheel and made the decision to make a pit stop to get it changed. I think it was the correct decision to do this. The final moto they put us all out together 250 and 450 for the Brian bell memorial, I made a terrible start and was slow at making passes in the beginning but then everyone in front started making mistakes. It was weird because one lap I was in like 6th and a lap and a half later I was in the lead, Jordan, Glenn and myself had a nice little three way battle for the lead for a while before they had crashes of their own. But it was fun.
Gatedrop: You won the MX2 Irish Championship again this year, you must be happy to win that series again and no doubt you’ll want the Ulster Championship too?
Jason Meara: Yeah, the championship wasn’t very well represented but someone always showed up for me to battle with should it have been Mccormick, Mackrel or Sheridan etc. Of course, it’s nice to win championships to give something back to everyone who sponsors me. Yeah, the goal is now to try win the Ulster championship, the points are basically nothing going into the final round so it should be fun.
Gatedrop: You were overlooked for the Coupe de l’Avenir and apparently being a reserve for MXDN team was a problem. What’s your thoughts on that from your side?
Jason Meara: From my side I got a phone call when the team was announced to say I was picked as a reserve for the MXON which to be honest I was happy enough with as the 3 best guys where picked. I then put my name forward for the Coupe de l’Avenir team which runs on the same date as the MXON. The decision was made at a meeting that I was overlooked for the Coupe de l’Avenir as I was a reserve for the MXON. I think there could have been other ways around this, maybe they could have picked me for the Coupe de l’Avenir and named a reserve for me so there was someone there if they were needed but it wasn’t my decision and the team has been named now and I wish them the best.
Gatedrop: Richard Bird has been chosen to fill in for the injured Stuart Edmonds at the MXDN. What’s your thoughts on that and what do you think you’d have brought to the team?
Jason Meara: Richard is riding great this year and without a doubt the ideal replacement for Stuart as he is a 450 rider. I think I could have brought a lot of heart and desire to the team as well as well some youth. But I’ve never raced a 450 so I was never going to be picked for that slot. My day will come some day hopefully.
Gatedrop: You didn’t race much of the British Championship this year, do you think that’s maybe cost you?
Jason Meara: No I don’t believe it has. I’ve proved my speed at home and at the MX Nationals. I’ve come from last to first on more than one occasion this year that has showed a mixture of speed and fitness.
Gatedrop: Focusing on the Irish and Ulster championships every year – is it hard to stay motivated just doing those championships – anything on the horizon for 2019, I know you did do the MX Nationals this year too?
Jason Meara: Yeah, it does become a bit repetitive. This year I did the MX Nationals as I like the selection of tracks and the better value for money with getting four races. Who knows what next year holds maybe I’ll go to the 450 to change it up or maybe I’ll give the 250 another shot to see how it goes.
Gatedrop: The racing isn’t great this year in the Ulster and Irish Championships. Something needs to change – what do you think can be done to improve it?
Jason Meara: Honestly, it’s so bad. Don’t get me wrong you still have the fast guys but nobody is supporting the championships and I don’t have an explanation as to why. People seem to be happier showing up at a practice track paying 20 quid and riding all day for fun.
Gatedrop: For any teams in England possibly interested in signing you for 2019, what sort of rider would they be signing in Jason Meara?
Jason Meara: They’d be getting someone who is willing to put their life into it, ride with his heart on his sleeve and work his balls of to achieve the best results possible.
Interview: Andy McKinstry
Pic: Nigel McKinstry