Road Racing News

2019 Manx Grand Prix: Preview – Part 3 – Lightweight/Ultra Lightweight Races

Providing racers with twice the opportunity to become Manx GP winners, the inter twined Lightweight, Ultra Lightweight races are certain to provide close fought, exciting, thrilling Mountain Course competition.

Looking towards the ER6 Kawasaki dominated in recent years Lightweight encounters, favourites for rostrum finishes will include reigning class champion, Skerries Andy Farrell.

Super Twins victor at Armoy, the amiable Farrell finally joined the MGP winners circle last year, after multiple near misses.

Photo by Mark Corlett

Will he make it four successive Lightweight class triumph’s this month? It’s a distinct possibility as is Spain’s Victor Lopez Santos creating history.

Should Martimotos backed Lopez Santos emerge victorious in one of the four lap races, he would become the first racer from Spain to claim a Manx GP winners crown.

More than capable of contending for class honours, it’s a notion also applicable to S1-R Paton mounted Francesco Curinga.

Curinga who enjoyed in May an impressive North West 200 venture, has impressed and some race fans on Manx shores since first tackling the fabled, mythical Mountain Course in 2017.

Additional global stars entered include fellow Paton mounted racer Veronika Hankocyova (Czech Republic), Renzo Van Der Donckt (Belgium), VRS Racing’s Pete Murray (USA) & Daniel Fernandez (Colombia) and Australia’s Royce Rowe (Australia).

Joining the aforementioned competitors on the Lightweight class entry list include a group of hungry, ambitious next generational roads exponents, all capable of scooping class honours this month.

The next gen roads talents to keep an eye on include Ballymoney’s Darryl Tweed, TZ 250 Yamaha mounted Gary Vines, event returnee Mark Purslow, Dave ‘Sideshow’ Butler, Jack Fowler, Brad Vicars (VRS Racing) and 2018 Newcomers B race winner Michael Rees.

Further depth to the Lightweight field is provided by improving, experienced, returning event stalwarts such as rostrum finisher from the 2011 Newcomers B race Wayne Axon, Mike Minns, David McConnachy, Dave Quine, Jamie Edwards, Chris Moore, Ian Gardner, Team York Suzuki’s Rodger Wibberley, Richard Stubbs and Steven Horne.

Photo by Nick Wheeler

Reintroduced to the Manx GP race schedule last year, ones to watch in the battle for Ultra Lightweight honours, which sees a mix of 125, Moto 3, Supersport 300, 400 mounted racers compete for victories include podium finishers from last year’s four lap races Dan Ingham, Alex Sinclair and Tom Snow.

Lots of attention will also be on the Kramer Motorcycles trio of Stephen Parsons, Sebastian Witt and Sarah Boyes, as the German Kramer brand aim to enhance their already impressive racing record which includes various Czech Road Racing successes.

Added confirmed Ultra Lightweight race entrants include the French duo of Richard Vuillermet and Lancelot Unissart, America’s Yuri Barrigan, Steve Moody, Rad Hughes, Derek Wilkie and talented newcomers like William Piquet and Falcon Road Racing’s Andrew Jackson.

Providing a mix of two strokes, Twins and the odd 250, this year’s Ultra Lightweight, Lightweight Manx GP races are in my opinion amongst the most difficult races to call with a host of hungry rising stars, seasoned event exponents all firmly believing they have the packages capable of sending them into the winners circle.

Words by Stevie Rial

>