Tandragee 100 qualifying report - Derek McGee throws down the gauntlet with trio of pole positions

Adam McLean (McAdoo Racing Kawasaki) and Derek McGee (NJ Doyne Kawasaki) in close proximity over the jumps in practice at the Tandragee 100 on Friday. Picture: Stephen Davison/Pacemaker Press.
Adam McLean (McAdoo Racing Kawasaki) and Derek McGee (NJ Doyne Kawasaki) in close proximity over the jumps in practice at the Tandragee 100 on Friday. Picture: Stephen Davison/Pacemaker Press.

Derek McGee put down a marker as the Mullingar man claimed pole position in three classes for Saturday’s 59th Around A Pound Tandragee 100 in Co. Armagh.

McGee topped the time sheets in the Superbike, Supersport and Moto3 classes and was only denied a quadruple by Tobermore’s Adam McLean, who narrowly claimed the top spot in the Supertwin session by 0.2 seconds.

Derek Sheils on the Burrows Engineering/RK Racing Suzuki. Picture: Stephen Davison/Pacemaker Press.

Derek Sheils on the Burrows Engineering/RK Racing Suzuki. Picture: Stephen Davison/Pacemaker Press.

In the Superbike class, McGee – who won the red-flagged feature event at the Cookstown 100 last weekend – clocked a time of 3m 00.149s take pole by 2.2 seconds from Derek Sheils (Burrows Engineering/RK Racing Suzuki), posting a lap of 106.787mph around the undulating 5.3-mile course.

Michael Sweeney was third quickest on his MJR BMW, 2.4 seconds back on Sheils, with Adam McLean in fourth on the McAdoo Racing Kawasaki. Thomas Maxwell and Shaun Anderson – riding Noel Williams’s BMW – rounded out the first six.

Earlier, McGee bagged pole in the Supersport class by three seconds from Sheils (Roadhouse Macau Yamaha), setting a fastest lap at 105.207mph on his Kawasaki.

Cookstown 100 race winner McLean was third, 1.2 seconds back on Sheils, with Sweeney in fourth on the MJR Yamaha. Mike Browne and Kevin Fitzpatrick were the top six.

Michael Sweeney tucked in behind the fairing of his 600cc MJR Yamaha. Picture: Stephen Davison/Pacemaker Press.

Michael Sweeney tucked in behind the fairing of his 600cc MJR Yamaha. Picture: Stephen Davison/Pacemaker Press.

McGee dominated the Moto3 race at Cookstown on his ex-Grand Prix Faraldo Racing Honda and he was 15 seconds clear of Gary Dunlop (Joey’s Bar Honda) in qualifying at Tandragee, lapping at 97.313mph. Nigel Moore was third on his Moto3 Honda behind Dunlop.

Darryl Anderson led the way in the Lightweight Supersport category from Paul Williams, while Kevin Fitzpatrick was the leading 125cc rider ahead of the returning Wayne Kennedy, who is riding a Honda under the Joey’s Bar banner.

Young gun McLean halted McGee’s dominance in the Supertwin session, narrowly setting the fastest lap at 101.617mph to keep the southern Irishman at bay by just two-tenths-of-a-second. Skerries man Sweeney was third – 5.3 seconds back on McLean – with Stephen McKnight next.

Andy McCallister set the pace in the Senior Support class, while Vinny Brennan topped the charts in the Junior Support session.

John Pemberton was quickest overall in Classic qualifying.

Roads close on Saturday at 10am for an eight-race programme.