Nearing it’s 70th anniversary, the Aberdare Park Road Races held in South Wales has over the years attracted many of the world’s best road racers, taking on the challenge of the event’s 0.9 mile long circuit.
At a glance just some of the famous names to have competed at Aberdare include Mike Hailwood, Bob McIntyre, Phil Read and Carl Fogarty.
In recent times the dominant force at Wales only real roads venue has been Dan Cooper. Welsh Open winner in 2013, 2015 and 2016, the reigning Ulster GP Super Twin winners pace, neat and tidy riding style has proven extremely tough to beat.
Photo by Joel Campbell
For many the one to beat this weekend, added talented riders capable of securing multiple wins include Ryan Dixon.
Runner up in last years Welsh Open, Ryan more known for his Short Circuit exploits, in championships such as British Supersport, has proven in recent years a natural around Aberdare Park.
Expect him to be amongst the foremost challengers for the Welsh Open crown, don’t discount as well Welshman Jay Bellers Smith, piloting the Smith Bros KTM and fellow countryman Matt Rees.
Additional confirmed entrants include Alex Sinclair, Justin Collins, Alister Chadwick plus newcomers Ben Shuttlewood, Steven Gormley and Grant Gaskell.
The meet is also set to be graced by 23 times TT winner John McGuinness, seven times North West 200 winner Steve Plater and TT 2017 Joey Dunlop Championship winner Peter Hickman.
Alongside the Supersport/Superstock 600’s, added classes of machinery represented this weekend include Super Twins, 400’s, 125’s, 250’s, Super Moto’s, Super Mono’s and a variety of classic machines.
Competition begins on Saturday morning from 9 AM, with the practice/qualifying sessions, prior to the start of the 23 race schedule
Words by Stevie Rial