Belfast Telegraph

Manx Grand Prix and Classic TT chaos as weather bites again


Contender: Luke Johnston is chasing title success
Contender: Luke Johnston is chasing title success

By Roy Harris

Qualifying was again cancelled for the Classic TT and Manx Grand Prix on the Isle of Man yesterday, a real headache for Clerk of the Course Gary Thompson who activated the contingency plan by announcing that two sessions have been scheduled for today.

Especially hard hit have been the Newcomers, who have only completed their speed-controlled lap - back on Saturday evening. In fact there has only been one session as far back as Monday for Classic TT Superbike, Classic TT Lightweight, Junior and Senior Manx machines.

Meanwhile, the Motorcycle Union of Ireland (Ulster Centre) have been looking at ways of encouraging younger competitors into the sport, something European countries have been doing for years, by starting coaching and training from a very young age.

Currently several of our teenagers are competing in the British Talent Cup and at British Championship level - and are giving a good account of themselves.

A new machine, the Tianda 300, is being introduced alongside the current Aprilia 125 and Junior Cup machines in an as yet unnamed championship next year, part of the Ulster Superbike Championship.

This new machine is seen as a cost-effective way for 12-year-old competitors to bridge the gap between Mini Moto/Pit Bike and the USBK feeder classes.

The Tianda will be on display at the ninth round of the USBK Championship at Bishopscourt on September 21/22 and the 10th round at St Angelo on October 5.

The Mondello Park Dunlop Masters Superbike Championship reaches the penultimate rounds of the season at the Co Kildare venue on Saturday and Sunday.

The headline Superbike class has been dominated for the last two seasons by Kilkenny's Richie Ryan (Mobil 1 Yamaha), but this time around he is just a single point ahead of Cullybackey rider Luke Johnston (Unlimited Industries BMW) going into this weekend's three races.

An interesting entry is Ross Irwin, brother of Graeme, Glenn and Andrew, who made his Kawasaki Superbike debut at the Norman Brown Memorial meeting at Bishopscourt last weekend.

Racing will get under way from noon on Saturday and 10.30am on Sunday.

Belfast Telegraph


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