Practice for the Topaz Dundrod 150 and McKinstry Skip Hire Ulster Grand Prix yesterday afternoon at Dundrod was punctuated in the early stages by red flag stoppages.
The worst of those involved Lincolnshire’s Lea Gourlay who crashed heavily exiting Dawson’s Bend in the Supertwins session and was taken to the Mater Hospital with a suspected broken femur and a head injury.
Ryan Farquhar topped both the UGP Superbike and Superstock sessions with a speed of 129.052mph fractionally ahead of Keith Amor who clocked 128.427mph in the Superstock class and Michael Dunlop who clocked 128.997mph in the Superbike class in which Amor was third on 128.683mph.
For this afternoon’s Topaz Dundrod 150 Superbike race Amor is the man on pole position lapping the Dundrod Circuit in 3.25.955secs a speed of 129.368mph, the fastest time of all in yesterday’s sessions.
Amor was 1.3secs quicker than Ryan Farquhar (128.553mph) while five-time TT winner Ian Hutchinson completing the provisional front row on 127.539mph.
Amor (KBMG BMW) said after Dundrod 150 qualifying session: “There is more to come. I wasn’t happy with the balance of my bike and the circuit is a bit green and slippery yet.
“My bike is a Superstock machine and it’s not as quick as Hutchy’s Superbike Honda, but in all honesty there are only about four full-blown Superbike machines out there. I’ll be looking to go a fair bit quicker in the morning. I’m disappointed the Supersport machines did not get a run today as we could have done with some time on it.
“I’ll give the Dundrod 150 race my best shot, but depending on how things go I could well use it as an extra practice session for the Ulster Grand Prix races.”
Guy Martin in his first road race since his 175mph Isle of Man TT crash ended the session in thirteenth position.
Skerries rider Michael Sweeney topped the National and Challenge practice session two and a half seconds ahead of Shaun Anderson and newcomer David Johnson from Australia while William Dunlop was two and a half seconds quicker than Welshman Ian Lougher at the top of the 125cc class. Lougher got his revenge in the 250cc class lapping at 116.53mph with Dunlop having to settle for second on 115.30mph.
Farquhar made a treble of fastest times by topping the Supertwins category on 113.331mph, but had to settle for second in the new classic class behind fellow Paton rider Ollie Linsdell.
Practice continues this morning roads closing at 10.30am with Superbikes first on track for their final session.
Meanwhile, it has been announced that Ian Lowry will ride for the Paul Bird WSB Kawasaki Team in the World Superbike Championship for the remainder of the season after a satisfactory debut performance at the Brands Hatch BSB round last weekend.
This is a tremendous break for the Hillsborough rider who will join Jonathan Rea as the second local rider in the top flight of Superbike racing.