Kerry riders ready to do battle in round two of Dunlop Masters
Round two of the Dunlop Masters Irish National Motorcycle Racing championship will take place this weekend and, as ever, a large number of Kerry riders are expected to compete on the three-race programme. .
Emmet O’Grady is the only Kerry rider competing in the top division but has the benefit of two UIster Superbike Championship events under his belt since the opening Masters’ weekend last month.
The Honda Fireblade rider had three top-seven finishes as Bishopscourt, County Derry last Sunday and while he won’t be over-happy with the final results, he is thankful for the additional seat time ahead of this weekend.
“We went the wrong way in Kirkistown but were back in the right direction at the weekend,” said O’Grady. “I will have to turn the screw and ride hard this weekend.”
He is just one of several Kerry riders making the trip to County Kildare at the weekend.
His brother Evan, Dean O’Grady from Ballyduff and Frank Doherty from Killarney will are expected frontrunners in the Superbike Cup championship.
“There will be a long train heading up on Friday morning,” added O’Grady
Tralee racer Robert O’ Connell is in a race against time to have his Yamaha R6 prepared in time for this weekend’s triple-header. The Supersport Cup rider entered last weekend’s second round of the Ulster Superbike Championship but his engine blew up on the third lap of his qualification session making the long trip north a journey in vain.
Darragh Crean will continue his quest for Production Twins class championship honours. He took a win and a pair of second-place finishes last month leaving him in second place in the series standings.
He will benefit from extra track time as he contested both rounds of the Ulster series since he last visited Mondello Park last month.
In his most recent outing, last weekend at Bishopscourt, he took two fourth places and a third-place finish in his three races.
“I just wanted bike time,” he said. “But I am going up to Mondello this weekend to win, I am not going up for the ride around.
Tom McElligott will make his race debut on the Production Twins Class. He sat out the opening rounds after a testing crash forced a delay in preparing his Suzuki.
One Production Twin Racer that will be missing from the grid is Samantha Martin. As revealed in The Kerryman last week, she is switching her attention to becoming a race paramedic and has sold her race bike to fund her university course.
Other local riders expected to feature include Andrew Murphy, Dylan McElligott, Anthony O’Carroll and Jack O’Grady.