Belfast Telegraph

Dundrod: Anstey leads all star cast

By Roy Harris

The world’s fastest road race was officially launched in Lisburn lastnight as a quality line-up of leading road racers, including current lap record holder and fastest rider in the world, Kiwi Bruce Anstey, was announced for the Saturday, August 13 Ulster Grand Prix at Dundrod.

Heading the entry list next week are 2011 TT winners John McGuinness, Gary Johnson, Anstey and local hero Michael Dunlop, who has yet to win a race at Dundrod.

Anstey, of course, set that scorching 127.955mph road race record on the Co Antrim course.

Snapping at their heels should be McGuinness’ TT Honda Legend team-mate Keith Amor, Wilson Craig Honda duo Cameron Donald and William Dunlop, Relentless Suzuki by TAS rider Guy Martin (six times at winner at Dundrod), Manxman Conor Cummins, riding the McAdoo Kawasaki’s, Ryan Farquhar, Ian Lougher, Michael Pearson and Adrian Archibald.

Dunlop is a name synonymous with Dundrod with the late Joey (48 wins) and Robert (17wins) amassing no less than 65 victories between them around the 7.4 mile circuit.

Robert’s sons William and Michael fly the Dunlop flag next week and both are well capable of beating the rest; their form in the last month breathtaking as they battled each other around the national road race scene the length and breadth of Ireland and on the Isle of Man.

Last weekend Michael raced to an emphatic treble at his home race in Armoy and said: “I’ve a weekend off now before the Ulster Grand Prix and I am totally focused on getting everything sorted for Dundrod as I desperately want to get a win there.

“It’s the only one of the big three international races I have not won at. It’s near about time I won there; I have fastest laps to my name, but people don’t remember the fastest laps, it’s the name of the winner on the trophy that’s remembered and I intend to put that right next week.”

Confirming Lisburn council support, Mayor Brian Heading, said: “On behalf of the Council I would like to publicly thank all the riders, teams and visitors for attending the Ulster Grand Prix whether for the first time or returning to the world’s fastest road race.

“I would like to thank Dundrod and District Motorcycle Club for continuing to promote this important road race and I hope the good weather continues to shine on UGP Bike Week.”

Clerk of the Course Noel Johnston said: “Already the atmosphere is building. We have received a tremendous amount of assistance from various quarters to ensure the running of the Ulster Grand Prix including Lisburn City Council and the Northern Ireland Tourist Board. Now we need the support of the public by purchasing our admission package of £25, while a race programme only costs £5.

“We have a terrific line-up of competitors with all the top names, many of them looking to end their international road racing season on a high, so we should see some thrilling racing.”

The Ulster Grand Prix has a long and distinguished history spanning almost nine decades.

This is the 89th year of the Ulster Grand Prix and it has now evolved into a week long festival of events commencing on Sunday with a sponsored walk around the Dundrod Circuit in aid of the Davy Wood Project, set up in memory of a great UGP supporter, followed by a church service in the paddock marquee at 3.00pm.

The on-track action starts on Wednesday with the Dundrod 150 and UGP practice with roads closed from 1.30pm to 9.30pm.

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