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Kennedy is aiming to emulate some of Ulster's finest


Rising star: Robert Kennedy has made a big impact in his first season

Rising star: Robert Kennedy has made a big impact in his first season

Rising star: Robert Kennedy has made a big impact in his first season

The British championship paddock is currently awash with local talent across a number of classes, and while the likes of Glenn and Andrew Irwin, David Allingham and Alastair Seeley have been dominating the early season headlines, we must not forget one of the series newcomers, Robert Kennedy, who is doing a sterling job in the Pirelli National 600cc Superstock class.

Riding for the Sandown Racing Team, Kennedy holds fifth place in the championship standings after the opening two rounds at Donington Park and Brands Hatch Indy, and is looking forward to round three on May Day Monday at Oulton Park.

"I must say I'm really looking forward to Oulton Park now on the Sandown Racing Kawasaki," said the Dundrod lad, who will also be taking part in a test day at the Cheshire venue today.

"It's another new track for me to learn, but we are doing a good job so far," said the youngster, who is hoping to follow in the footsteps of a number of local riders who have won the same British championship class, including Keith Farmer, Jamie Hamilton and Lee Johnston.

Meanwhile, reigning World Superbike champion Jonathan Rea, who leads the 2017 series by 50 points after just three rounds and six races aboard his all-conquering Kawasaki Racing Team ZX-10RR, completed a successful test earlier this week at Portimao in Spain, which makes a return to the SBK calendar this year.

Ulsterman Rea said: "It has been really nice to test here in Portimao, especially to continue on from our positive test in Aragon.

"I'm really thankful to Kawasaki and all the staff for making this test happen.

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"It comes at a good time to try to keep the momentum we have built up as we move forward now to Assen."

The next round of the World Superbike Championip takes place at Assen in the Netherlands on April 28-30.