Monday, June 18

Dunlop Masters roundup - Weekend treble sees Richie Ryan extend championship lead

In the Superbike Pro championship, Peter Moloney made the most of Charles Stuarts absence, keeping Richie Ryan honest in the process. This made Ryan the more determined and he bagged pole by almost half a second. When the lights went out, he didn’t hang around either and was rewarded with 3 wins, albeit 3 hard fought ones. Race 1 was tightly contested and only a gap of 2s separated 2nd place Peter Moloney and 3rd spot Luke Johnston. Ryan won race 2 from the narrowest of margins from Moloney again to be closely following by Johnston. Rain threatened race 3 but everyone stuck with tyre choice of slicks which was the right decision in the end. An uncharacteristic crash from Moloney in race 3 left the podium to Luke Johnston and a welcome return to James Kelly on the tidy GSXR1000. 

Pole position in the Cup class went to Gary O’Brien on the BMW S1000rr but, only by 0.09s from Jamie O’Keeffe setting up for some close racing. In race 1 however, it was Michael Prendergast that would take the win from 2nd place O’Keeffe and O’Brien in 3rd. Jamie O’Keeffe went one better in race 2 to take the win from Prendergast with Joe Grant completing the podium in 3rd. In race 3 Chris Campbell stole the show on the ZX10r to win from 2nd place Gary O’Brien as Dean O’Grady returned to the podium on the Honda Fireblade. Gary O’Brien still leads the Cup Championship table from Michael Prendergast.

The Supersport Pro championship is a battle between Dean McMaster and Emmet O’Grady and the entry this weekend of current champion Jason Lynn made the contest more interesting. Continuing where he left off, Lynn set a qualifying time almost a full second quicker than his rivals and took race 1 by 10s from McMaster in 2nd and O’Grady in 3rd. This setup a pattern and Lynn would go on and take the 3 wins in the Pro class. In race 2, Emmet O ‘Grady reclaimed 2nd from McMaster and in race 3 Dave Butler took the last podium place on the Kawasaki ZX6r. 

In the Cup class, Keelim Ryan continued to impress by qualifying P1 but wouldn’t have it all his own way during the three races. Championship rivals Eoin Collins, Trevor Landers and Kevin Baker pounced when the opportunity arrived and Collins took full advantage with 3 unanswered wins. Ryan banked points with every podium that he shared with Baker and Landers which will make for interesting reading when the revised Cup championship table is updated.

The Young Guns races saw Jamie Lyons continue his unbeaten run despite the best efforts of Nathan McGauran and Oisin Maher. McGauran was 2nd in race 2 and 3 with Maher taking both 3rd places on the Yamaha YZF R-3. In the Junior Cup Alex Duncan did the double with newcomer Karl Lynch taking two 2nd places on the Aprilia RS125. Jamie Lyons now has a commanding lead in the Young Guns championship while in the Junior Cup, the double win for Duncan narrows the gap from Karl Lynch by some margin.

In the Supertwins races, the usual suspects appeared on scene in the form of Dave Butler and Derek Wilson. Butler took the bragging rights for qualifying with sub-59s lap and went on to win the 3 weekend races from Wilson. Other visitors to the podium were Kevin Dempsey, David Halligan and Barry Sheehan. Kevin Dempsey qualified in pole position in the Production twins class and would go on to win races 1 and 2 before crashing out in race 3. Adding to the Production twin podiums were Vinny Brennan, Shane O’Donovan and Jamie Collins. Vinny Brennan won the restarted race 3 from Jamie Collins and Shane O’Donovan.

The sidecar races saw three different winners take the top step after Dylan Lynch and Mark Gash qualified in pole. They duly went on to win race 1 from brother Derek and his passenger Anthony McDonnell with Fergus Woodlock returning in 3rd giving a chair debut to Superbike rider Andrew Murphy. Race 2 went to Terry O’Reilly with Brian Butler on the back after a tight dice again with Derek Lynch and Anthony McDonnell. Derek and Anthony went one better in Race 3 taking the win from O’Reilly\Butler and Dylan and Mark in p3 over the 12 laps.

In the Principal Pre-injection championship, Ian Prendergast extended his lead winning all 3 races comfortably. Adding silverware to their collection in this class were Jonathan Gregory, Cian Donaghy, Gerard Doyle and Anthony Lillis. Prendergast now has a strong lead in the championship over Kevin Madigan.

Running on National circuit due to a shortage of marshals, the Classics took to the track on Saturday. Race 1 was a close affair between Andy Kildea and Herbie Ronan with Kildea winning by slim margin of 1 second with Brain Mateer in 3rd. Race 2 produced the same result.

Words Andy Quinn

Images Johnny Sweeney

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