Belfast Telegraph

Racing's big names sign up for Tandragee 100 challenge

By Paul Lindsay

The 56th Around-a-Pound Tandragee 100, scheduled for April 22-23 is shaping up to be a memorable weekend, with a plethora of road racing's leading competitors signed up to take part.

The promoting North Armagh Club has secured an entry that will be the envy of many rivals, with the likes of Dungannon's Ryan Farquhar lining up against reigning Irish Superbike and Supersport champion William Dunlop aboard his stable of CD/IC Racing machinery.

Manxman Dan Kneen, the 2014 Tandragee 100 Man of the Meeting - will make his Irish national road racing debut with Temple based Mar-Train Racing, and in form duo Derek Sheils and Malachi Mitchell-Thomas, will be hungry for more success following last week's four wins for Cookstown B.E Racing at the Mid Antrim 150.

Farquhar is the most successful national road racer of all-time with 208 career top steps, and having secured two wins on his smaller capacity machinery at Mid Antrim, the Dungannon ace will now be looking to stretch the legs on his new IEG BMW Superstock machine.

Mullingar's Derek McGhee is still a virtual unknown on the road racing scene, despite tangible success, and having agreed to ride the Joey's Bar MCC 125cc Honda at Tandragee alongside his TAS Racing prepared Williamson BMW S1000RR, he will be one to watch.

Derek Sheils took the Grand Final victory at Mid Antrim and a second place to his prodigiously talented young team-mate in the Open Class.

Now racing a Dunlop shod Suzuki for John Burrows' team, the Dubliner is hungry to win this season's Irish Superbike crown.

"I missed the Irish Superbike races at both Tandragee and Kells last year and they cost me the title, but I'll be aiming to win the title back in 2016," he explained.

A 350 strong entry with over 30 newcomers and prize money in excess of £10,000 should be a big enough carrot to produce some top class racing in the nine-race programme on Saturday, April 23. The event will also see the unveiling of the all-new 'Doc John's Rise' in memory of Motor Cycle Union of Ireland flying doctor John Hinds, who lost his life performing his voluntary duties at Skerries last summer.

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