Tommy guns his way to a hat-trick

AN excellent crowd of over 500 spectators turned out on Wednesday past at McCormick's Farm, Glenoe, for the third round of the Watt Motorcycles Grasstrack Championship, promoted by the Carrick & District M.C.C.

The circuit was in fantastic condition at the beginning of the evening and even required some watering to keep the dust down - a contrast to last year’s wash out.

With Wayne Garrett (TSR KTM) still out of action with a shoulder injury, the door was open to Richard Watt (Watt M/Cycles KTM) to close the 40-point advantage held by Garrett going into the third round. An impressive line-up of expert riders, notably multiple Ulster champion Tommy Merton (Watt M/Cycles Kawasaki) and three-time British champion Gordon Crockard (Watt M/Cycles Kawasaki), ensured for a top-class night of racing.

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Merton was totally focused on the job in hand and showed that by clinching a hat-trick of race wins in a dominant display of raw speed around a very fast Glenoe circuit. Despite Crockard's best efforts, he couldn't stop Merton and recorded three second places.

Richard Watt got two thirds and a fourth on the night and has now moved into pole position in the championship with one round to go, five points ahead of Garrett. Merton has now jumped into third in the table, five points adrift of Garrett.

In the quad class, David Wray's win streak finally came to an end. Wray clinched race one and two from a chasing Jonny Kelly, but could only manage a second in race three, following a bad start. Kelly was then able to capatalise and grab his first race win of the series. Wray now leads Kelly in the series by 46 points. Ricky Toye, from Ballykelly, finished third in all three races and retains the final podium position in the championship table.

MotoXAds/Watt KTM upcoming rider Charles Stewart was yet again in unstoppable form in the two-stroke class and remains the only rider to remain unbeaten in all three rounds, after capturing maximum 75 points to take his total to 225. Richard Watt got the better of David Kinkaid overall at round three and extended his second place advantage over the yamaha rider to 19 points.

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The veterans’ class provided some of the most competitve racing, with many smaller groups within the class battling it out in the fast and furious five lap races. James Earney came out on top overall, shooting him right up the championship standings into third, even though he missed the first round at Dalways Bawn. Paul McGuire and Michael McBride ended up with 44 points each and secured the second and third steps on the podium at the end of round three. The gap at the top of the table remains the same with McGuire leading McBride by 20 points. Earney sits 11 points back in third.

Competing for the first time with the Carrick Club, trials rider Shaun Turkington took all three race wins in the Grade C Open class, onboard his 450f Kawasaki, while Saintfield rider Gary Bell increased his points lead in the class to 49 points over Darren Beattie, who did not compete at the Glenoe. Ray Brownlie managed to hold onto third in the series on a total of 80 points. The race for second spot in the championship will boil down to the final round in September with a mere eight points separating second to sixth!

The final round of the 2010 Watt Motorcycles Adult Grasstrack Championship is to be held on Saturday, September 18 with the venue still to be decided. More information on the last round will be released in the coming weeks and the racing is sure to be no-holds-barred, judging by how close some of the classes have become after Wednesday's racing.

Please also make a note in your diary for Friday and Saturday, August 27-28. The Carrick Club will be running a two-day motocross at the spectacular grand prix circuit of Desertmartin, near Cookstown/Magherafelt. Details on this event will be released during the week.

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Carrickfergus & District Motorcycle Club would like to thank landowners Harold and Sandra McCormick; sponsors Norman and Ricky Watt; riders; spectators; officials; marshals; first aid; timekeepers; and Larne Borough Council for their help and support with running another successful event.

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