James Cowton certainly made his intentions known during his debut
race at the 2012 Southern 100, finishing second to Ryan Kneen in the
Station Garage 400cc race and then took tenth place in the S & S
Motors 600cc race. The then twenty-year-old picked up two unwanted
DNF’s in the second 400cc race and later in the Solo Championship
Twelve months later and the Driffield rider was back taking another
podium place for third in the Mike Kerruish Plumbing 650cc race –
sharing the podium with Jamie Hamilton and Dean Harrison (1st & 2nd).
The second 650cc race, the Ocean Ford sponsored event saw him
take fourth, this time it was Dean Harrison, Ivan Lintin and Jamie
Hamilton who kept him off the podium.
James added a fifth in the Radcliffe’s 600cc race and a seventh overall
in the Solo Championship, and the first 600cc to finish – no mean
achievement in only his second year of racing on the 4.25-mile Billown
2014 and James opened his account with a fifth in the Corlett’s 1000cc race on the Tuesday evening and
followed that with a sixth in the Ellan Vannin Fuels 1000cc race on the Wednesday.
On his 650cc Supertwin he gained two podiums – third in the Mike Kerruish race behind Ivan Lintin and
Dean Harrison and second in the Ocean Ford race with Dean once again in front of him. He finished off
with a fourth in the S & S Motors 600 race and a fourth in the Solo Championship.
James Cowton finished off the 2014 season winning the prestigious Duke Road Race Rankings Champi-
2015 and in both the Supertwins races he was sandwiched between Ivan Lintin and Jamie Coward. Due
to prevailing conditions the Ellan Vannin Fuels commenced proceedings and James took sixth spot. In the
Corlett’s 1000/600cc race he finished tenth overall and second 600 behind Seamus Elliott, completing the
week with fourth in the S & S Motors 600 race and fifth in the Solo Championship.
A year later he was the winning 600 rider in the Corlett’s race, taking tenth overall, repeating the feat in the
Solo Championship taking 12th overall.
In the Supersport races he finished fourth in the Radcliffe Butchers race and third in the S & S Motors race
with regular rivals Dean Harrison and Jamie Coward filling the other podium places, whilst in the Ocean
Ford Supertwins race he had his second podium of the event – second- Ivan Lintin claiming top spot.
2017 saw James Cowton on the podium four times. Twice for second places in the Mike Kerruish and
Ocean Ford Supertwins races, both times with Ivan Lintin on the top spot. In the Supersport races he fin-
ished second and third in the Radcliffe’s and S & S Motors races. His two outings in the Superbike races,
he took sixth in the Corlett’s race and fourth in the Ellan Vannin Fuels races finally taking fifth in the pres-
tigious Solo Championship.
The ever-smiling Yorkshireman ventured into the Post TT Races in 2013 taking fourth place in the 650cc
race, with Dean Harrison, Jamie Hamilton and Ivan Lintin in front of him.
Returning in 2015 he notched up two race victories in the 600cc and 650cc races and in 2016 collected a
rare and unwanted DNF in the 600 race, making up for this disappointment with a win in the Supertwins
Competing in all three races in 2017 taking the chequered flags in the 600 and 650 races, being pipped to
the post in the 1000cc race by Jamie Coward with William Dunlop third.
This year, in the three races, James had to deal with the new ‘Young Guns’ Adam McLean, his team mate
and fellow Yorkshireman Joey Thompson. James was the filling in the sandwich in the 600cc race and
finished second to his new ‘Tyke’ rival in the 650cc race.
However, he was back to winning ways taking victory in the feature 1000cc race ahead of Rob Hodson
and Ryan Kneen.
2013 also saw James enter the Blackford’s Pre-TT Classic Road Races riding in the Post Classic race, his
debut brought him a third overall and second in class – the 250cc, with only Chris Palmer ahead of him.
2014 saw another third overall but taking the 250cc winners laurels.
With the Post Classic class becoming very popular, the combined classes were spilt into two races. Once
again James was entered in the Junior (250cc) category and won the race on the Peter Berwick Yamaha
and has continued to dominate the race in the following years, 2016, 2017 and this year 2018.
Returning to the Southern 100 of 2018, James Cowton was enjoying his most successful year at the July rac-
es, with six podiums out of eight races he finished and in those two races he took fourth places in both – the
opening Corlett’s 1000cc race and the prestigious Solo Championship.
The two Supertwins races, the Mike Kerruish and Ocean Ford events saw two second spots, firstly behind
‘old rival’ Ivan Lintin; then once again the filling in the sandwich between Adam McLean and Joey Thompson.
The 600cc Radcliffe’s and S & S Motors races saw James on the third podium both times with Dean Harrison
and his McAdoo team-mate Adam McLean ahead of him. The two Superbike races again saw the likeable
now twenty-six-year-old take two third places.
James succumbed to his injuries during the 600cc Challenge race and the road racing world lost a unique rid-
er, who was well liked and respected by his fellow competitors, many of which commenced their ‘pure roads’
racing careers at the same time as James becoming great friends and firm rivals. No matter what James al-
ways had a smile and a cheerful word for everyone.
The road racing fraternity has lost a special person and his partner, Chloe can be justly proud of his racing
achievements, not only on the Billown Course, but everywhere he raced, as can his father Fran and his part-
ner Janet and all members of his family, team members and close friends.
James Cowton will be very much missed in the Paddock at all three ‘Southern 100’ races, but his achieve-
ments and friendship will be fondly remembered. R.I.P. James.
Photo courtesy of Kirsten Harrison
PDF ATTACHED – 58.James Cowton – A Southern 100 Tribute