In the same year as Michael Dunlop setting the first sub 17 minute lap of the Mountain Course, the battle to be no.1 within the 2016 IRRC Superbike series was between Belgian roads giants Vincent Lonbois and reigning Champion Sebastien Le Grelle.
Going into the third round of the season at Circuit De Chimay, Lonbois firmly held the upper hand over Herpigny Motors BMW Motorrad Belux team mate Le Grelle, enjoying a Championship lead of 27 points.
The first eight lap Superbike encounter around the fast, flowing roads of Chimay saw Lonbois, Le Grelle showcase their proven world class roads credentials.
Photo by Robby Repsol
Ultimately Lonbois who would go onto become just the fourth IRRC Superbike series winner, held off the attentions from a determined Le Grelle, emerging victorious by just 0.7 of a second.
Twice IRRC Supersport Champ Marek Cerveny concluded the rostrum finishers, whilst a tight, keenly contested battle for fourth was won by former Ulster GP front runner Marc Fissette, as four times IRRC Champion Didier Grams had to settle for fifth.
Johan Fredriks was sixth, Patrick Quintens took seventh, Petr Biciste placed eighth, circuit newcomer Lukas Maurer chalked up a very respectable ninth place finish as Tim Van Ooijen concluded the top ten finishers.
Notable non finishers included 2012 Newcomers A Manx GP winner Kamil Holan and Markka Racing’s Erno Kostamo.
Words by Stevie Rial