The curtain comes down on the Irish road racing season this weekend with the Country Crest Killalane meeting.
Roads close for practice around the 3.6mile circuit, near Skerries, tomorrow at 1pm to be followed by a Supersport non-championship and the Irish championship junior classic race and a full nine-race programme on Sunday.
In the aftermath of the tragic death of Trevor Ferguson at the Manx Grand Prix and the subsequent retirement of his nephew, Ryan Farquhar, Killalane will be somewhat subdued.
However, racing goes ahead and the entry is led by the Dunlop brothers, Michael and William, both with tremendous records at the meeting; Michael the outright lap record holder at 114.271mph has four wins while older brother William is a six time winner.
Having completed a Supersport/Grand Final double here a year ago, Michael is the man the rest have to catch. William has never won a four-stroke race at Killalane and will be keen to put that statistic to rest on the Wilson Craig Honda, his best chance coming in the Supersport races.
One man looking to give the Dunlops a run for their money is Michael Pearson, who will be riding this weekend for the Yorkshire based Team Hotties Thermal Packs in the Superbike and Supersport classes while competing in the Supertwin race on the Rod Lee Kawasaki ER6.
Pearson said: “Killalane is one of my favourite circuits — it’s where I won my first Superbike road race in 2009. The offer to ride these particular machines this weekend was too good to turn down although I am still committed to all my current sponsors.”
The entry for Killalane also includes Derek Sheils, Davy Morgan, Adrian Archibald, Adelaide Masters championship leader Brian McCormack, Sam Wilson, Paul Robinson and Maria Costello with roads closing on Sunday morning at 9.30am.