The report from The Irish Times also states that “just under €200,000 of funding is being made available to eight initiatives which will provide training in bike skills as well as maintenance and safety.”
These initiatives are a way of staving off bad behavior on bikes – specifically, shenanigans attached to youth with a two-wheeled dream, the means to carry it out, and an inclination toward no-good derring-do’s about town (or even just a desire to ride wild). Dublin’s purported to have been plagued by hooligans gunning about towns, exacerbated by the number of youth out on scramblers and quads during and after the pandemic.
“The problem reached a peak during the first Covid-19 lockdown when there were about 50 young people misusing scramblers around the area,” mentions the report.
“officials…identified two distinct types of bike-users. One group uses [bikes] specifically for criminal purposes, such as transporting drugs. The other was young people who had a genuine interest in bikes but didn’t see the damage they were doing.”
Obviously, the latter group of youth will be the main target for the scrambler tracks – and O’Byrne is factoring in a surge of extra hullabaloo when Christmas rolls around, resulting in new bikes, new memories…and potential for new chaos.
Bikes don’t have to be attached to crime; the joy of riding a motorcycle is more than enough, and O’Byrne is banking on the tracks redirecting some of the ruffians towards a trail/track that can better channel their emotion and energy in a safe sphere – for the good of both the rider and the rest of the surrounding towns.
“The aim of the project is to teach young people how to safely use a bike on a track, with the required protection, and to get their buzz and adrenaline rush that way,” finishes O’Byrne. He also mentions that the Garda Roads Policing Unit has also assisted by providing motorcycle competency tests for any participants willing to use the track.