Road Racing News

Southern 100 Preview – Part 2 – Super Twin/Lightweight Races

650 giants a plenty, are guaranteed to provide top class Super Twin encounters, at the 2017 Southern 100.

Twice Lightweight TT winner Ivan Lintin, bounced back from a testing TT 2017 campaign, at the Cock O’The North Road Races at Scarborough, wrapping up series of wins, on Dafabet Devitt Racing’s all new Z650 Kawasaki.

Photo by Mark Corlett

Confident of making it six Super Twin victories in a row at Billown, Ivan will be tough to beat. Same applies though to McAdoo Racing’s James Cowton.

Whilst the Lightweight TT, might not have lived up to expectations for the former Duke Road Race Rankings champion, the rest of his season thus far on 650 machinery, has been extremely fruitful.

Wins at Oliver’s Mount, Cookstown and the Post TT Races, have showcased his undoubted ability within the highly competitive class.

Alongside James and Ivan, a vast amount of hungry rising stars are capable of securing podium finishes.

Photo by Mark Corlett

Amongst them include Rob Hodson, Manx GP front runner Jonathan Perry and Anthony Redmond.

Others to keep an eye on include Brad Vicars, JHS Racing’s Dave Moffitt/Michael Russell and newcomers Lee Hembury, Owen Graves.

Looking towards the Lightweight races, one of the pre race favourites, has to be rising star Darryl Tweed.

Piloting the M&D Racing 400 Kawasaki the Ballymoney based rider, wrapped up last year back to back 125/400 victories, on his debut at the Southern.

Photo by Jim Gibson

Added anticipated front runners include 400 specialist Alistair Haworth, Seamus Elliott, Adrian Kershaw, Dave Taylor and Oliver’s Mount stalwart, Mick Goodings.

Photo by Nick Wheeler

125 and Moto 3 machines entry strong representation courtesy of Manx Sidecar TT legend Dan Sayle, Paul Robinson, Tom Snow, Gary Dunlop and high profile newcomer Derek McGee on the Joey’s Bar Racing Honda.

Additional debutants within the Lightweight encounters, are as follows: accomplished Irish roads competitor David Howard, Neil Lloyd, Benjamin Heaton, Bob Masters, Andy McAllister, Peter Fletcher and Enda Trearty.

There’s also attention a plenty focused upon Nottingham University’s UoN-02 electric machines, as they compete against the conventional petrol powered bikes.

Dr Gimeno-Fabra of the Nottingham University team, stated about the upcoming Southern 100 challenge:

“Our main goal is to push the limits of the available technology, and in doing so also teach our students what they can do with their degrees.

Far from just being another University project we are a racing team, and competing at the highest level is what we want to do.

Being able to race at the Southern 100 which is such an iconic road race is fantastic, there is nothing like road racing to test the capabilities of any machine.

We hope to put up a good show and be competitive against the petrol bikes which is something unprecedented.

We are delighted to be able to partner with Darvill Racing for this event, their technical knowledge and experience is outstanding, but they also fit with our team values and work ethics.”

Photo by Nick Wheeler

The mix of 125’s, Moto 3’s, 400’s plus a few electric steeds, provides all the ingredients for enterprising Lightweight races on the famous Billown course.

Words by Stevie Rial

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