2011 Sunflower Trophy Races
The Sunflower Trophy Races at Bishopcourt in Northern Ireland wrapped up this past weekend, with Ian Lowry taking the main race and both Irish Superbike races aboard the TAS Suzuki GSX-R1000.
This wasn’t Lowry’s first Sunflower Trophy, though; the Irish racer also took the trophy in 2009. Lowry was joined on the podium by Parkaglar Honda’s Sam Lowes and Gearlink Kawasaki’s Danny Buchan.
Lowry finished 10.558 seconds ahead of Lowes, and also set a new track record at the Bishopscourt Circuit, a 1:23.508 at 92.082 mph on Pirelli tires.
Lowry was teammates with British Supersport Champion Alastair Seeley for the event, but Seeley was forced to withdraw from the event after bruising some rips in the Supersport race.
Ian Lowry (TAS Suzuki) says: "It was great to be back riding for Relentless Suzuki by TAS this weekend and I clicked straight away with the Suzuki, so thanks to Hector and Philip for the opportunity. It’s always nice to end the season on a high but to come away with a Superbike hat-trick and the main Sunflower Trophy again is fantastic.
"The first race was a real battle with Alastair and it’s a pity he got injured in the Supersport race as I was really looking forward to racing with him. Thankfully he’s not too badly injured. Hopefully this will let people see what I’m still capable of on top class machinery and there’s no better way to go into the winter than finishing off with some champagne and silverware."
Alastair Seeley (TAS Suzuki) says: "I was looking forward to evening things up with Ian in the Sunflower race but my luck ran out in that Supersport race. We were forced onto the dirty stuff to get around the backmarkers and when Jack high-sided I’d nowhere to go and hit his bike. I can’t remember too much about it to be honest but I’m okay today. My friend who I’m going to Australia with saw the crash and thought, ‘that’s the end of the holiday’ but I’m fine. My ribs and elbow are a wee bit sore but that’s it. I was really looking forward to the event but there’s always next year."
Philip Neill (TAS Suzuki Team Manager) says: "I’m delighted for Ian to have come away with three wins this weekend, also giving us our sixth Sunflower win as a team, but am also bitterly disappointed for Alastair. After such a great year he was looking forward to capping it with a good performance in front of his home fans, but for some reason Bishopscourt doesn’t seem to be that kind to him. Thankfully he’s not too badly injured as he’s off on holiday next week to Australia.
"All in all a good day for us as a team and it’s always satisfying to sign off the season with some success on home soil. We’ve had a pretty satisfying season so big thanks must go to Suzuki, Relentless and all our team partners, and also thanks to Came for coming on-board this weekend for the Sunflower races."