The Dan Kneen Charitable Fund has handed over two sizeable cheques to organisations closely associated with motorsport.
The Covid-19 pandemic has had a profound impact on fund-raising globally, and the Isle of Man is no exception.
The Rob Vine Fund, set up following the death of a rider from Dover in the 1985 TT, gives invaluable support to many branches of motorsport in the island and beyond.
In addition to supplying equipment and providing administrative services it is also directly linked to Hogg Motorsport (in memory of local rider Phil Hogg), which provides rescue ambulances and highly-trained personnel.
Secretary and director of the Rob Vine Fund, Dr David Stevens MBE, a retired consultant radiologist at Noble’s Hospital, confirmed that the fund is down £150,000 in the year to date because of the loss of collections, fees for the hire of the unit’s three fully-equipped ambulances and crews, plus other individual donations.
Lost collections from IoM Steam Packet Company vessels alone over the TT/MGP periods this year have cost the fund in the region of £25,000.
‘In the 25 years since 1995, collections made on Steam Packet vessels have raised approximately £300,000 for the fund,’ confirmed Dr Stevens.
‘Our first Hogg Rescue Unit in 1990 was a converted former hospital ambulance, but things have come a long way since then.’
Hogg Motorsport has one MSA (Motor Sport Association) licensed rescue ambulance and two new front line ambulances. It has 10 MSA licensed rescue motorsport medical technicians and seven trainees. In addition is honorary paramedic Mark Corlett, Dr Karen Wilson and further support from Dr Gruff Evans, a director and founder of Manx Roadracing Medical Services and senior medical officer for the TT/MGP.
The donation of £5,600 from the Dan Kneen Charitable Trust has enabled Hogg Motorsport to purchase 10 new scoop stretchers (at the price of £550 each) for use at local club events like Andreas Racing Association meetings at Jurby, Billown (Southern 100 etc), various off-road events, car rallies, stock car meetings and such like, in addition to those on the Mountain Course.
‘The stretchers have to be renewed every 10 years, so this is a vital purchase for Hogg Motorsport,’ continued Dr Stevens. ‘I also need to find £6,500 to insure the three ambulances in the unit.’
A further cheque of £5,000 has been presented to the Auto-Cycle Union Benevolent Fund, which is administered locally by Wyn Evans MBE.
The Isle of Man annually raises thousands for the fund, but Mrs Evans confirmed last week that the Covid-19 situation has hit the registered charity very hard.
‘We normally raise hundreds of pounds at the TT alone, but this year in the month of June all we managed was £61, mostly from the sale of 2020 TT badges.
‘The cheque of £5,000 from the Dan Kneen Fund is a huge help to us.’
TT 2020 badges are still readily available from Mrs Evans at the price of just £3.
Photo by John Watterson