Top Superbike stars to serve up an Easter treat
The opening races of the 2011 Irish Superbike Championship, which take place on Good Friday and Easter Saturday at Bishopscourt, were launched last night in Downpatrick, with the two-day prize fund impressively in excess of £13,000.
The feature race on the two-day programme will be the Enkalon Trophy race, now in its 35th year.
The prize fund in the Irish Superbike category over the two days is £4,400, with the winner of the Enkalon race collecting £1,250. The popular ‘Sail to Pole’ qualifying system, based on the World Superbike system of elimination over three qualifying sessions will be used at Bishopscourt, with the pole man collecting £250 and the Nutt Travel trophy.
On hand to launch the series was popular road racer William Dunlop (pictured). The Ballymoney man will debut his Wilson Craig Honda Superbike at Bishopscourt alongside team-mate and former TT winner Cameron Donald. Both riders are sharp enough performers on the tarmac scene and should pose an immediate threat to the regular ISB runners.
The grids will house some familiar names like three time TT winner Adrian Archibald and former British Superstock champion Jamie Hamilton, both riding ZX-10R Kawasakis.
British Superstock regular Stephen Thompson will also make an appearance alongside current Adelaide Masters’ Series leader Kirk Jamison who will make the short trip from Greyabbey.
Mark Johnston and David Haire have both returned from injury and will expect to be challenging at the business end of affairs in the ISB class along with Denver Robb and Waterford’s Brian McCormack.
Ryan Farquhar is another who needs no introduction and the talented Dungannon man is expected to arrive with a full stable of KMR Racing Kawasakis, looking to get dialled in before the forthcoming Relentless International NW200 on May 21.
The Walter Bell & Son Supersport classes will house a plethora of talent, all chasing the £2,500 prize fund along with Christian Elkin, Michael Sweeney, Gary Robinson, Michael Pearson, Declan Swanton and Jordan Bonnar.
Archibald and Farquhar will debut their KMR Racing ER6 Kawasakis in the Down Council 650cc Super Twin class with Marty Lennon, Michael Sweeney and William Davison expected to be the main opposition for the £1,400 prize fund.
The Charles Hurst Hyundai 125GP class should see Paul Robinson and Nigel Moore battle it out with Jason Lynn, Luke Johnston and Korie McGreevy; and in the 250GP class William Dunlop and Paul Robinson will have Thomas Lawlor and Daly Mathison to contend with.
Each class will have three guaranteed Championship races at the MCRCCI and Killinchy Club event with qualifying starting on Good Friday, April 22, at 9.30am.