Derek Sheils doubles up at Killalane on Irish return.

Derek Sheils made a winning return to Irish road racing with the Burrows Engineering Racing team at the East Coast Racing Festival at Killalane.


Sheils showed no signs of ring rustiness as the Dublin rider edged a tight Open Superbike race by 0.138 seconds over Michael Sweeney. He later made light work of his opposition to secure victory in the Grand Final Superbike race by 18 seconds from Sweeney.


It was a magnificent performance by Sheils on his trusty Suzuki GSX-R1000, who gave his home fans the result they had been looking for at the County Dublin venue. He also claimed a runner-up finish behind Derek McGee in the opening Supersport race on his own Yamaha R6.


However, Sheils’ team-mate – young English prospect Davey Todd – was left frustrated after he was unable to ride to his full potential at the final Irish National road race of the season.


The 22-year-old was feeling unwell over the weekend and was later diagnosed with a bladder infection. Davey finished fourth in the Open Superbike race and second in the Supertwins race. He was forced out of the first Supersport 600 race after the Burrows Engineering Racing Honda developed a problem. Davey opted to sit out the Grand Final Superbike event.


Team Principal – John Burrows:

“Fair play to Derek, he took some time away from National road racing but he came back and picked up where he left off. Credit where it is due because he did the business again and it’s a great feeling going into the winter having won the last race of the year.


“In the first Superbike race, Michael Sweeney gave Derek a good run for it but we made some suspension changes for the second race and fitted a different rear tyre, so Derek was able to put in a couple of hot first laps and he went on to win very comfortably in the end.


“Davey was in quite bad shape with a bladder infection and he wasn’t feeling it all weekend. He was fourth in the first Superbike race and he managed to get second on the Supertwin, so it wasn’t too bad, all things considered. It was clear the infection had been working on him, so best wishes to Davey for a speedy recovery.


“The Irish road racing season is now over and I feel we’ve had a really strong year. Derek won the Ulster Superbike Championship and Davey had a very strong year at the internationals, when he became the fastest newcomer in history at the North West 200 and the second fastest newcomer in history at the TT behind Peter Hickman, where his results were outstanding. Davey also had a fantastic Ulster Grand Prix up until his crash in the Superbike race. He did a great job at the Irish Nationals as well in his first full season, although he came up against Derek McGee, who has been in top form all year.”


Derek Sheils:

“I really enjoyed it and to win a couple of races was the icing on the cake. Everything went according to plan and we made a few changes from the first race to the second race, which improved the handling of the bike. We were able to push on a little bit more in the Grand Final, so it all went well and it was good to be back. All credit to the team for coming together and making the changes that we needed for the second race.”


Davey Todd:

“Unfortunately I got a bladder infection over the weekend. It’s just one of those things unfortunately and I felt really tired all weekend. I woke up on Sunday morning and really didn’t feel good at all. I tried to do what I could but when I went out on the bike, I felt really bad. It just got worse as the day wore on and after the Supertwin race, I went for a lie down and basically I couldn’t get back up again! 


“I had no energy whatsoever so we sat out the last Superbike race. It was a disappointing way to end the Irish season but overall it’s been an unbelievable year for me, especially at the international races. I can’t thank John Burrows and the team enough for giving me the opportunity to achieve the results that we got this year.”


The team has a provisional entry in place for the Macau Grand Prix in November with Davey Todd, while Derek Sheils will compete at the event for the Penz13 BMW team.


Picture: Pacemaker Press