Thursday 27 October 2016

Maggie's chilling reminder; Renault up the ante; Superb idea; Ambassador Jake

Published 06/04/2016 | 02:30

Skoda are asking people to sit in, drive and compare their new Superb.
Skoda are asking people to sit in, drive and compare their new Superb.

I don't suppose you know Maggie Martin.

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She's a senior researcher. She is the one who carried out unbelievable work on the report that showed how tyres have been major contributory factors in so many accidents (See details by our Road Safety Authority expert).

The reason I mention her is that for a moment on Monday at the formal unveiling of the RSA research, she managed something quite memorable (for me anyway).

She managed to reduce the myriad facts and figures to a simple, but chilling, reminder.

She said her research work had been a "long harrowing task". Crashes, she said, are so upsetting because they are so "violent".

And then she quietly said: "Any of us could be in the next report because of one lapse. It's extremely scary what can happen."

That's what got me. In those few words she conveyed how little there is between us and eternity, every time we get into a car.

All we need is for one thing, be it our mood, our tyres, brakes, wipers, lights - anything - to be not quite right and bad, bad things can happen.

She deserves widespread recognition for what she has done and how she has forced such attention on tyres in particular.


Talk about confidence on your car . . . Skoda are asking people to sit in, drive and compare their new Superb with "the well-known and luxurious BMW 5-series" (Skoda's words not mine).

They are inviting members of the public to test drive both cars at their dealers in Dublin.

All you have to do is visit any Skoda dealership in the capital between now and Saturday (April 9).

I'm really looking forward to the outcome of that.

It sure shows confidence in a car doesn't it? If you go along let me know which you would choose:


Oooooohhh I love it when one marque claims it is the fastest growing or the best at something on the market.

Somebody else inevitably takes offence and points to the facts and figures showing they are the best.

This week it is Renault's turn to put their head above the parapet and claim that with more than 9,000 registrations the group is "now the fastest growing in the combined Irish market" - with a share to 9.4pc up from 8.3pc.

They're talking passenger cars (up 43.9pc and commercials (11.7pc). Now let's wait for the retorts. Just don't shoot the messenger ok?


Jake Byrne is Motorsport Ireland's young driver of the year and he has teamed up with Kildare Road Safety Authority to drive a number of campaigns to improve road safety.

His first job as 'ambassador' will be next Sunday's 'Safer Roads Exhibition' at the Punchestown Event Centre near Naas. Jake is expected to talk about road safety with drivers of all ages, but especially the young ones. Admission is free.

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