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Hat-trick for Farquhar at Tandragee

Ryan Farquhar marked his return to the Irish Road Racing Championship, and in particular the Superbike class, in superb style at the weekend as the SGS International/KMR Kawasaki rider took a superb hat-trick at the Tandragee 100 road races .

Ryan on his way to winning the Superbike race at Tandragee

Back on a 1000cc machine for the first time since 2012, Ryan qualified fourth for the Superbike class and with bad weather forecast for Saturday, the 5-lap Open race was brought forward to Friday evening. With changes to the set-up of the machine on the warm-up lap, Ryan was feeling a lot more happier with his ZX-10R Kawasaki Superstock machine and a good start saw him locked in battle with Jamie Hamilton and William Dunlop.

 

When Dunlop hit the front, Ryan slotted into his slipstream and the two continued to exchange the lead as they circulated close together. Going into the final lap though, Ryan was in front and he held on for a superb win, 0.4s clear of Dunlop with his best lap being just over 107mph.

 

As expected, Saturday dawned wet and cold and Ryan opted out of the Superbike and Supertwin – where he’d qualified on pole – races due to the forthcoming North West 200 and Isle of Man TT Races. However, he did contest the Moto 3/450/400 and Classic races, taking a hard fought win over Ian Morrell in the former and a comfortable win on Roger Winfield’s 500cc Paton in the latter.

 

Fellow team-member Connor Behan also had a good meeting finishing fourth on his 600cc machine in Saturday’s Superbike race and qualifying fourth in the Supertwin race. Team-mate Jeremy McWilliams, making his debut at the 5.3-mile circuit, qualified eighth and went on to take a good third in the Classic race.

 

Ryan Farquhar: “Everything’s gone really well this weekend and I was over the moon with the Superbike result on Friday evening. Having been away from the class for so long, it was great to mark my comeback with a win and although I was having a few set-up issues in practice, the two warm-up laps before the race allowed me to make further changes and when we came under starters orders I was really up for it. I knew on the first lap William was up for it too and we had a great battle so I was chuffed to bits to get the better of him in what was a great race.”

 

“I had no problems with riding in the conditions on Saturday but with the North West and TT coming up, going out on the big bike and Supertwin would simply have given me too much work to do in terms of getting the bikes ready. As it was I took out the Paton and the little 450 and whilst the former was a relatively straightforward win, the latter was anything but as Ian pushed me really hard. His 400 had more top end than my 450 and I’d say it was the hardest I’ve ever had to ride in the wet to win a race!”

 

“I’ve made a lot of changes to the Supertwin, going down a completely different route, and it was flying in practice so I can’t wait to ride it at the North West and TT. I’ve learnt a lot with the Stocker both here and at Scarborough too so, hopefully, I can transfer what I now know to the Superbike and we’ll be on the pace at the North West and TT right from the word go.”

 

Practice for the International North West 200 road races gets underway on Tuesday May 12th with the opening races taking place during the evening two days later. The feature race day takes place on Saturday 16th May.

Farquhar chalks up a century of wins at Scarborough

Ryan Farquhar got his 2015 road racing season up and running at Oliver’s Mount, Scarborough over the weekend and he did so in fine style as he clocked up a century of wins around the 2.43-mile woodland circuit.

 

The 100th win came on Kevin Pearson’s Team York Suzuki 1100 in Saturday’s Classic F1 race but it was a successful day all round with strong results on the SGS International/KMR Kawasaki machines too. Back on a 1000cc machine for the first time since mid-2012, Ryan took a strong second behind Guy Martin in the opening leg of the Spring Cup and then took fifth on the same machine in the Senior race, just 2s behind Martin in second. He also took a good third in the Lightweight race.

 

Saturday’s sunshine was replaced by overcast, drizzly skies and temperatures as low as six degrees on Sunday and Ryan swiftly made it win number 101 in the second Classic F1 race, overhauling the fast starting Peter Boast on the second lap. However, with conditions worsening and with the International road race season only a few weeks away, Ryan opted out of the remainder of the meeting to avoid the risk of suffering any kind of mishap.

 

Ryan Farquhar: “With the weather being what it was over the course of the two days, it proved to be a tough weekend for everyone but it was a worthwhile meeting for me and I’ve come away pleased with the results and with a good idea where I need to improve the bikes. Prior to Scarborough, I’d only got about 12-15 laps on the big bike at Kirkistown and with it being wet there too, I had no chance to get the bike set up so came into Scarborough a bit blind. I spoke to Nick Morgan and Richard Adams from Maxton and their input allowed me to get a base setting from where I could at least perform.”

 

“To be honest, I was surprised to be doing the lap times I was doing in Saturday’s dry races and to push Guy and have boys behind me who’d been testing in Spain was very pleasing. The gearing wasn’t right on the Twin for all the tight hairpins but I got a solid third and was pleased with the top end speed so with a few more things to try I think we’ll be there or thereabouts. Unfortunately, the weather on Sunday was really cold and wet and with so much work to do and so many important meetings coming up, I didn’t feel it was the worth the risk to go out in what were pretty awful conditions.”

 

“I was pleased to get the two wins on Kevin Pearson’s bike but it was that cold on Sunday, my hands went numb after three laps and I couldn’t feel the handlebars. When it’s like that, it’s so easy to make a mistake and for other riders to do the same so I opted out of the remaining races to head home and start preparing all the bikes for the Tandragee. No one can help the weather and like I say, it was a productive meeting so I’ll be looking to move things forward with the bikes and be that bit closer to where I want to be next time out.”

 

Ryan’s next outing will be the Tandragee 100 on Saturday May 2nd.Ryan was in fine form again at Scarborough

Strong presence for KMR Kawasaki at the 2015 Isle of Man TT Races

KMR Kawasaki/SGS International will again have a strong presence on the grid at the 2015 Isle of Man TT Races fuelled by Monster Energy, with Ryan Farquhar’s team fielding four riders across the solo race programme.

 

The three-time TT Race winner recently announced he would be returning to the 1000cc classes, campaigning a ZX-10R Kawasaki in the RST Superbike, PokerStars Senior and RL360º Superstock Races, in addition to his expected outing in the Bikenation.co.uk Lightweight event. He will also be running Lee Johnstone, Danny Webb and Connor Behan.

 

Johnstone will line up for the first time on a KMR Kawasaki with the 2013 TT Privateer’s Trophy winner already having confirmed his rides for the East Coast Construction team in the other solo races. The 26-year old took ninth place in the corresponding race in 2013 and is sure to line up as one of the favourites in the three lap race on board one of Farquhar’s immaculately prepared machines. He already has International Road Race success on his CV in this class, with wins at both the North West 200 and Ulster Grand Prix.

 

Webb, meanwhile, enjoyed an excellent first time appearance at the TT in 2014, taking a best finish of 13th in the Lightweight race on the KMR Kawasaki, and backing this up with a trio of bronze replicas in the 1000cc events where he lapped at close to 121mph. The former 125cc and Moto 3 GP rider has set his sights on the British Supersport Championship this year but will once more ride one of Farquhar’s ER-6 Kawasaki’s in the bikenation.co.uk Lightweight TT Race.

 

Connor Behan made an impressive TT debut last June, finishing an excellent ninth in the bikenation.co.uk Lightweight Race as well as taking a brace of bronze replicas in the two Monster Energy Supersport Races where he also lapped in excess of 120mph. With the 23-year also having secured the 2014 Irish Road Race Supertwins Championship, Farquhar has had no hesitation in fielding the Cheshire rider again this year.

 

Confirming the final line up for his team for the TT, Ryan Farquhar added:

 

“I’m really excited about this year’s TT. I’m putting a lot into my own on track efforts this year and that is a priority for me, but I am also excited to be working with three of the brightest prospects in the sport in Lee Johnston, Danny Webb and Connor Behan. Lee has shown his class for a few years now and is ready to make the big breakthrough and we are delighted to have him on one of our Kawasaki 650’s for the Lightweight TT where he will start as one of the favourites.”

 

“Danny is a truly world class rider and was a joy to work with last year. He showed straight away how talented he is with a very strong TT debut and I am pleased we are able to work together again in his second year. Connor has a lot of natural talent and I was very impressed by how well he did at the TT last year. I am sure he will build on that this time around and will continue to progress further up the leader board. He is still very young but he has the makings of a great TT career ahead of him.”

 

Pictures by Stephen Davison – Pacemaker Press International

 

Phil Wain

Freelance PR

 

Farquhar and KMR Kawasaki return in force in 2015

kmrpr1Having made his comeback to road racing in 2014, Ryan Farquhar and his KMR Kawasaki team are set to have a greater presence on the grid this year with the Dungannon ace returning to the 1000cc Superbike and Superstock classes with ZX-10R Kawasaki machinery.

In addition, the 38-year old will continue to contest the Lightweight Supertwin class on his immaculately prepared ER6 650cc Kawasaki with his main sponsors again being SGS International and Manx Gas whilst he will continue to enjoy the support of many of his long-time backers.

Farquhar, the most successful rider in Irish road racing history, competed in just a handful of Supertwin races during 2014 but a lack of track time affected his results and he believes a return to the 1000cc classes will give him a greater chance of success, particularly at the International road races, namely the Isle of Man TT and North West 200.

A three time winner at the TT, it will be the first time Farquhar has contested the 1000cc races around the Mountain Course since 2012 but he hopes to add to his tally of 13 TT podiums as well as getting back on to the podium at the North West 200 where he has been victorious on four occasions.

Ryan Farquhar: “When you only have one bike at a meeting, particularly the International races, it’s a bit of a struggle as everyone is getting more track time. You’re playing catch up all the time and whilst you’re sorting out your braking points and getting used to the track conditions and the like, everyone else is already dialled in and fully up to speed. You’re behind before you’ve even got going and when you’re at that kind of disadvantage, it’s practically impossible to make the ground up. By getting back out on the 1000cc machines, I’ll be out on track a lot more and so will be able to compete on a more equal footing.”

“It also means I’ll be able to give my sponsors some more exposure and PR. I’m extremely grateful to have SGS International and Manx Gas on board as my main sponsors whilst it’s also great to retain the loyal support of my other backers, many of whom have been with me for a long time now. I’m hoping I’ll be able to get some good results for both myself and my sponsors in 2015 and I’m really looking forward to the season starting.”

In addition to the Isle of Man TT and North West 200, Ryan plans to contest the Tandragee 100 and potentially the Armoy road races and Southern 100 meeting. He will also compete at the Classic TT for Roger Winfield once more on his Paton and Harris Yamaha machinery.

Meanwhile, the KMR Kawasaki team will again field Connor Behan in the Supertwin class, the Cheshire youngster having enjoyed a superb 2014 season in the class with victory in the Irish Road Racing Championship as well as recording superb results at the Isle of Man TT and Ulster Grand Prix. Former Grand Prix winner Jeremy McWilliams will also be back in the familiar black and orange colours in the Supertwin class at the North West 200, which he won back in 2013.

Ryan will soon be flying out to Australia for the annual International Island Classic meeting at Phillip Island, which takes place on the weeked of 23/24/25 January.

Picture by Stephen Davison – Pacemaker Press International