Masters Championship battles continue at Mondello
The 2016 Masters Superbike Championship battles continue at Mondello Park on Saturday and Sunday May 7th and 8th as the championship returns to Kildare for its second visit of the season.
Last time out at Bishopscourt Nico Mawhinney was the Superbike star as he took his first Masters race win in round three and then made it a double in round four. Having jumped into championship contention following his double victory Mawhinney is set to continue in the Masters series for the rest of 2016 and will make his first Mondello Park appearance since 2012.
Robert English still leads the Superbike championship from the improving Nikki Coates, who finished with a second and a third at Bishopscourt, with Mawhinney next up and Gerard Kinghan fourth. The returning Cody Nally was back on the pace at rounds three and four and battled for the race one lead until he fell off. The former British Superstock Championship racer appears to be almost back to his best following a long recovery from injury and should be right in the mix at Mondello Park. Another rider looking for improvement will be Brian McCormack, who currently languishes in twelfth place following a disastrous start to the year brought about by engine problems. Charles Stuart continued his winning ways in the Superbike Cup at Bishopscourt and now sits well clear of Barry Sheehan and Paul Swords in the championship standings.
The Supersport championship is wide open after event two, where Ross Patterson and Nikki Coates took the wins. Patterson’s debut Masters win came after Coates was disqualified from race one, but the win was well deserved as he was running right with the leaders throughout. The championship battle is very tight with Richie Ryan leading from Luke Johnston and Coates , who both outscored Ryan at Bishopscourt. Patterson’s win moved him into championship contention along with Jason Lynn, Robert Kennedy and impressive rookie Aaron Clifford, who also leads the Supersport Cup.
The supporting programme at Mondello Park will include the Principal Insurance Pre-Injection class where a fantastic three way battle is developing. 2015 Champion Paul McCrea, Stephen Doyle and Kevin Dempsey have filled the top three positions whenever they have finished, but McCrea leads the way due to non-finishes for both Doyle and Dempsey at round four.
The Classic Superbike championship for older machinery and older riders makes its first appearance of the season at Mondello. The championship for riders and bikes with a combined age of more than 70, has proved very popular and a number of new riders are set to join in for 2016. Also on the bill are Supertwins and Production Twins, Lightweight Supersport, Sidecars, Classics and Production 125cc-300cc machines.