Ulster Championship RD4: The Preview
The 2016 MRA Motocross Championships Premier Classes are led for the first time by two brothers, Loughbrickland natives John (MX1) & Jason (MX2) Meara as the cricus returns to the fast spectacular hard pack of Tandragee Motocross Park for round 4/
In the Norman Watt Motorcycles Premier MX1 Class, John Meara from Loughbrickland has extended his lead on his Watt Kawasaki to 7points ahead of multi Irish & Ulster Champion Comber’s Wayne Garrett on his GMP/CCR/Watt/Spratt Electrics KTM 350, Wayne will be absent from Tandragee after a huge crash last weekend left the popular multi Champion hospitalised, the motocross family wish Wayne and wife Sarah all the best of luck for a speedy recovery.
Chasing Garrett now is Lisburn Irish Champion Richard Bird on his Five5motorsport Watt 350 KTM, although he is a distant 29 points adrift, although anything can happen with 75 points a day up for grabs as Portavogie Risk Racing/GOMX Yamaha teamster Robert Hamilton, the reigning Ulster Champion can attest after the last visit to Tandragee, where a breach of the outside assistance rule led to a disqualification for the reigning Champion, but he is only 3 points behind Bird. Fifth is the luckless Jordan Scott on the HTM Husqvarna 350, and sixth is Dublin rider Jordan Keogh on the two stroke TM 250
The nuttravel.com Premier MX2 Class is led by Jason Meara on the Motul/Watt KTM is second, the Loughbrickland teenager, second is Richard Bird now 13 points adrift of Meara on his Five5motorpsort KTM, while John Meara sandwich John is third on his Watt Kawasaki 250 still 11 points behind Bird, with young Belfast rider James Mackrel still holds fourth on the Risk Racing Yamaha, 24 points behind John Meara now, with returnee Sean Devlin from Banbridge fifth on his Yamaha and Jordan Keogh doing a sixth place double on his Kawasaki.
Adding a bit of interest, Jordan Scott will be aboard a 125cc two stroke for this round, and the exciting Newtownards man will be a dark horse on the HTM Husqvarna.
In the Precise Protect Insurance Semi Expert MX1 Class, Ballyclare man Ulster Shredders Husqvarna mounted Paul Atkinson has extended hos lead to an impressive 31 points ahead of Ballymena’s Ryan Esler on his 350 KTM, with reigning Clubmans Champ David Martin an impressive third only 13 points behind on his JSW Electrics KTM, 14 points behind him is Downpatricks Chris Orr in fourth with Moira’s Jordan Blakely in fifth on his JB Electrical KTM and Stephen Poots sixth on his Suzuki.
The Matheson Contracts/Laverty MX Semi Expert MX2 Class Carrickfergus man Karl Thompson on his Risk Racing/GOMX Yamaha has a 19 points over Ballyclare man Kris Rea on his Yamaha with Donegal man Aaron Gardiner only 9 behind him in fourth, with Cailum Devlin out for the season after a nasty leg break, Magherafelt teenager Jake Hall
on his KTM, Michael Clyde in his similar machine, and Cameron Turley from Larne on his two stroke machine will be looking to capatalise.
The Russells Motorcycles Clubman MX1 Class English based Greysteel man Jordan Allingham on his EHA Honda lost his lead after machine problems at the last visit to Tandragee, Ciaran Boyle now leads on his two stroke Yamaha by 9 points, third is ex road racer Denver Robb on his 350 KTM 14 points behind, while fourth is Comber veteran Stephen Gabbey on his KTM 350, fifth is Kawasaki mounted Ian Dunlop, while Dungivens Ryan Canning is sixth on his KTM.
The Spence Racing Clubmans MX2 Class Nathan Hamilton on his Yamaha leads the pack a handsome 43 points ahead of , Johnny Presho on his Honda, Tony Conlon is third now, only 7 points behind, while fourth is Lurgan man Ruari Grimes on his Yamaha, with Alan Saunders and John Morrow filling out the top six
Racing starts at 11.00 on 18th June and the track will be signposted off the Mahon Rd between Portadown and Tandragee, postcode is BT62 2LS.
Words: Malcolm Beattie
Pic: Nigel McKinstry