Cookstown 100: Michael Sweeney takes Superbike pole from Mike Browne
Michael Sweeney secured pole for the Superbike races at the KDM Hire Cookstown 100 on Friday.
The Skerries man, who finished as the runner-up in last year’s sole Superbike race behind fellow Republic of Ireland rider Derek Sheils, posted his best time of 1m 25.970s on his sixth lap in the second qualifying group.
Sweeney’s time on the MJR BMW puts him ahead of Cork rider Mike Browne, who lapped in 1m 27.692s, with Adam McLean third on the McAdoo Racing Kawasaki (1m 29.315s).
Paul Jordan from Magherafelt, making his roads debut for the Isle of Man-based PreZ Racing team, was fourth fastest (1m 29.490s). Jordan was riding the 1000cc Yamaha R1 in anger for the first time after a fuel pump problem prevented him from testing the bike at Bishopscourt in Co Down on Wednesday.
Banbridge native Shaun Anderson (NW Racing) was fifth quickest.
A number of top names are missing, including Sheils – the man to beat in the feature class around the Orritor course in recent seasons – plus Derek McGee, who misses out through injury, and Michael Dunlop, who is competing in the British Supersport class at Silverstone for the Dynavolt Triumph team.