2022 NW200: Superstock victory brings Seeley hat-trick

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Picture: Impact Images

Alastair Seeley took his 27th North West 200 victory on Saturday with the IFS Racing Yamaha rider seeing off the early challenge of Michael Dunlop (MD Racing) to eventually win the Superstock race by more than 11 seconds from Lee Johnston (Ashcourt Racing BMW) and Dean Harrison (DAO Racing Kawasaki).


Seeley grabbed an early lead from fellow Carrickfergus rider Glenn Irwin (Honda Racing) and although the latter dived up the inside at York Corner, he immediately ran wide and dropped behind Davey Todd (Milenco by Padgetts Honda) into third.

Irwin then looked to take the lead at University but he ran straight on with Todd also running onto the grass and when the dust settled it was Seeley who was leading from Dunlop by half a second with Michael Sweeney (MJR Racing BMW) going great guns in third.

Harrison, Conor Cummins (Milenco by Padgetts Honda) and Johnston completed the top six with Irwin and Todd regrouping in tenth and 11th respectively. Ian Hutchinson (Milwaukee BMW) was a first lap retirement though having already ran on at the Metropole.

Dunlop hit the front at the Mathers Chicane on lap two with the gap between the two 0.4s starting lap three only it was now Seeley leading once more. Todd had amazingly fought his way back up to third but a lap record of 123.685mph showed how he’d managed it and behind him the running order was Johnston, Harrison, Cummins, Irwin and Sweeney.

Lap three and it was Dunlop’s turn to run on at University and that handed Seeley a formidable looking lead of 3.6s with Dunlop’s mistake meaning Todd pushed him back to third. Johnston, Harrison and Sweeney were now running in fourth to sixth with Irwin, Michael Rutter (Bathams Racing BMW) and Cummins all pulling in to retire at half race distance.

At the end of lap four, Seeley had increased his lead to 4.4s and it was now Johnston in second as he edged away from Todd who now had Harrison for close company. Dunlop pulled into retire and that promoted Sweeney and Dominic Herbertson (GB Racing BMW) up to fifth and sixth in what was proving to be a race of attrition.

Going into the final lap, Johnston cut Seeley’s lead by three tenths of a second and it was now Harrison in third as Todd’s pace slowed. Sweeney still held onto fifth but Herbertson’s strong run ended with retirement at the pits and that put John McGuinness (Honda Racing) into sixth.

Seeley had it all under control and took yet another NW200 victory to complete his hat-trick for the week with Johnston and Harrison joining him on the podium in second and third respectively. Todd’s ride ended when he pulled in at the Metropole on the final lap and it was Sweeney, McGuinness and Sam West (Moto Hub/PRL BMW) who filled the fourth to sixth place positions.

Former Manx Grand Prix winner Nathan Harrison (Quayside Racing Honda) had an excellent ride into seventh with Craig Neve, Jamie Coward and Swiss ace Lukas Maurer rounding out the top ten.

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Picture: Derek Wilson