Mark McLernon extends lead at top of Ballymac Ulster Premier Quad Championship

Mark McLernon extended his lead in the Ballymac Ulster Premier Quad Championship after claiming the overall victory at round three of the series at Laurelbank.

Wednesday, 14th July 2021, 6:02 am
Hillsborough's Mark McLernon and Dean Dillon from Moria finished first and second overall in the premier quads at Laurelbank
Hillsborough's Mark McLernon and Dean Dillon from Moria finished first and second overall in the premier quads at Laurelbank

It was not all plain sailing for the Hillsborough rider in the hot dusty conditions.

The seat on his Quadbikes R Us Yamaha came off in the early stages of race one forcing the reigning champion to drop off the pace and nurse the machine home in fourth. It left former champion Justin Reid a clear winner with Moria’s Dean Dillon fighting through from fourth to finish second ahead of David Cowan.

Race two saw McLernon take his first win of the day despite a puncture with Dillon again second. Reid was in Dillon’s wheel tracks but dropped back to fourth by the chequered flag behind Cowan.

“I was behind Dean in the dust and caught a bump hurting my back again,” explained Reid. “It was only two weeks ago that I damaged it and on a tough track it was impossible to fight for the podium. I had to just bring it home in the final two races.”

McLernon took his second win of the day in race three with a gate to flag victory over Dillon with Banbridge rider Cowan third.

“Losing the seat in race one was a problem and to be honest I gave up at the halfway stage. A couple more laps in race two with the puncture would have been a struggle but it was good to get the overall,” said McLernon.

The sidecar class saw a welcome return to action from a broken leg for Lisburn’s Gary Moulds. He took victory in race two with passenger Lewis Gray but it was fellow Lisburn rider Neil Campbell with his passenger Ross Graham who claimed the overall with his 121st career victory in race three.

“I was lacking bike fitness,” said Moulds. “We were fastest in qualifying and to get a win was amazing. It was only our third race together in a year and a half but great to be back as our first Grand Prix takes place in Estonia in August.

Campbell’s passenger Ross Graham said: “It was a tough day as I was having real bother with my back. We got the hole shot in all three races but after winning race one I lost my footing in race two and Gary got past but with the race three win it gave us the overall.”

Thirteen year-old Ross Dillon from Moria dominated the 250 youth class with three wins while Dean Young took the overall in the clubman class. Downpatrick schoolboy Corey O’Hara won the youth auto class with Dromore’s Adam Gibson the 100cc youth winner. Kyle Orr was the semi-expert quad victor.