BMW Motorrad Motorsport
East London and Armoy, 29/07/2015, Road Racing
BMW privateer Nicholas Kershaw overcame the chaos caused by the rain in East London to finish third in the South African SuperGP Champions Trophy. Fellow BMW rider Lance Isaacs was fourth. Meanwhile, BMW privateers Guy Martin and Michael Dunlop claimed two victories for the BMW S 1000 RR at the Armoy Road Races in Northern Ireland.
The fifth race event of the South African SuperGP Champions Trophy (RSA SBK) was held in East London on Saturday – however, the weather made for some eventful racing at the “Eastern Cape SuperGP”. Damp spots on the track caused a number of crashes in practice and qualifying. This in turn caused a delay in the schedule, and the organisers consequently took the decision to cancel the Superpole qualifying. As such, the grid positions for the first race were determined by the morning’s qualifying results.
Just as the race got underway it began to rain heavily, and the riders struggled with perilous conditions for 12 long laps. In the end, Kyran De Lange (Bavarian Motorcycles / Silverton Midas) came home third on his BMW S 1000 RR. Nicholas Kershaw (Tsunami Beach Bar BMW) followed him over the line in fourth. However, De Lange was subsequently disqualified, meaning Kershaw was promoted to third place after the race.
BMW rider Lance Isaacs (Black Swan Energy) also had his sights set firmly on the podium. East London was the scene of his first victory in the series last year – a success he was determined to repeat. The more so as Isaacs – unlike his rivals – feels right at home in wet conditions. Starting from second on the grid, he wasted little time in taking the lead. “I felt like a fish in water and was ready to win,” he said. However, his hopes were dashed by a crash. While he was able to continue, he lost almost a minute. Isaacs ultimately came home fifth, behind Kershaw, and was subsequently promoted to fourth in the official result.
As the rain failed to subside, and water poured across the track, the second race was cancelled. The organisers are looking into the possibility of staging the cancelled race on another race weekend.
The road racers were back in action at the weekend. This time, they assembled in Northern Ireland for the Armoy Road Races – and the BMW riders were unbeatable once again in the Superbike races. Tyco BMW claimed a one-two in the first of the two races for Superbikes, the “Torquetronix Superbike Championship”: Guy Martin won, ahead of team-mate William Dunlop. This was the third victory of the month for Martin and his Tyco RR. Michael Dunlop was fourth on his MD Racing BMW S 1000 RR.
The highlight of the event was the second Superbike race, the “International Race of Legends”. This time it was Michael Dunlop who triumphed, coming home two and a half seconds ahead of second-placed Guy Martin. William Dunlop finished fourth. The weekend was a real home event for the Dunlop brothers, Michael and William: they come from Ballymoney, which is just a few kilometres away.
The riders used the Armoy Road Races to prepare for the next major road-racing event: the Ulster GP at the start of August.