Belfast Telegraph

Seeley has a target on his back as title fight hots up

 

Speed machine: Alastair Seeley leads the British Supersport Championship
Speed machine: Alastair Seeley leads the British Supersport Championship

By Roy Harris

All eyes will be on Alastair Seeley and Jack Kennedy at Knockhill this weekend after the duo's controversial locking of horns last time out.

The spat at Brands Hatch has ramped up the heat, and the pair will go head-to-head again as action resumes in the Dickies British Supersport Championship at Knockhill in Scotland, where practice for round five begins this morning.

Seeley and Kennedy renew their rivalry with the EHA Yamaha of the Carrickfergus ace 30 points clear of his closest challenger, who rides an Integro Yamaha, in the Championship chase.

Defending champion Kennedy said: "Knockhill is a favoured track of mine, as it reminds me of Mondello Park where I grew up racing.

"I did the double at Knockhill last year, so the aim will be to do the same again. The wrist I injured at Donington Park has improved with the extra healing time and I can't wait to get out on track on Friday morning."

Seeley has scored eight podiums from the eight races to date and will look to continue that run and maintain his advantage at the head of the table.

Glenn Irwin, 10th in both British Superbike races last time out at Brands Hatch, is confident he can move inside the top six this weekend.

"At Brands we finally found the fault that has been dogging us all season, so it was nice to go out on the JG Speedfit Quattro Plant Kawasaki and feel normal," said the Carrickfergus racer.

"Obviously we'd rather not have had this issue and be down in 16th in the Championship, but it is better to find the problem ahead of round five while we can do something about it.

"The guys have been working hard behind the scenes and we have some new parts for me to try this weekend to improve the bike even further.

"Top six and the Shoot Out in the Championship is our target and with a couple of good rounds that is certainly achievable."

Irwin's team-mate Ben Currie, out of action since May after crashing at Oulton Park, hopes to be back on the grid this morning with the aim to score points in Sunday's races.

Christian Iddon and Keith Farmer will be looking to get their Tyco BMWs inside the top six, while for Josh Elliott on the OMG Suzuki a top 10 would be welcome following his run of form since finishing first and second in the opening round at Silverstone.

Eunan McGlinchey got the better of Korie McGreevy and Caolan Irwin in Superstock 600 at Brands and jumped into second in the Championship chase, seven points behind Aaron Clifford.

Another close battle is envisaged between the Irish contingent and New Zealander Shane Richardson.

Meanwhile, world-class off-road competitors will descend on Desertmartin this Sunday for round five of the Maxxis British Motocross Championships.

Martin Barr on his Crescent Yamaha is our best local hope for a podium in the MX2 class.

The Ballyclare rider currently lies sixth in the Championship behind five regular Grand Prix competitors.

An unfortunate retirement in the last round with brake issues was a blow to his chances of being in a higher position after finishing third in the opening moto.

Five points separate New Zealander Dylan Walsh, Josh Gilbert and Swedish competitor Alvin Ostlund at the top of MX2, while in MX1 Tommy Searle has a five-point lead over Scotsman Shaun Simpson, who is back to full fitness after breaking a hand at Blaxhall during the last round.

Red Bull KTM factory rider Jeffrey Herlings will still be attending Desertmartin in a PR role for Milwaukee Tools despite sustaining an injury during the MXGP round in Latvia.

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