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Preview - Grand Prix of Northern Ireland.

MX1 series leader Josh Coppins will return to action with his points lead reduced to 43 after injuring his left shoulder, while nearest rival Steve Ramon is in turn facing pressure from star rookie Sebastien Pourcel, who won his second grand prix of the season last time out at Namur.

Ramon's Suzuki team-mate Kevin Strijbos and David Philippaerts of KTM Red Bull currently round out the top five in the points standings, and both will be on a mission this weekend.

Philippaerts, racing his last season with KTM before heading to Yamaha Rinaldi for 2008 and 2009, aims at taking third place back from Pourcel while double GP winner Strijbos is returning to form after a knee injury that has left him 17 points behind Phillipearts.

Ken De Dycker and Tanel Leok - the latter having been on the podium at Namur - are battling for sixth place, while Julien Bill, who rode to a brilliant third in moto two at Namur, will chase his maiden podium at Moneyglass.

In other news, TM will provide their only factory rider Manuel Priem with a new machine, the TM MX1-GP 08, featuring significant technical improvements that will be unveiled at Moneyglass.

In the MX2 class, Antonio Cairoli can secure his second world title this weekend. Reigning champion and nearest rival Christophe Pourcel is currently 124 points behind the Italian with only 150 still available. Pourcel also has his hands full fending off a determined attack from KTM's Tommy Searle.


Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Josh Coppins – Yamaha.
Antonio Cairoli celebrate 2009 MX1 title victory
Antonio Cairoli – Yamaha
Antonio Cairoli (Yamaha).
Barragan, Cairoli and Leok on the Valkenswaard podium
Josh Coppins - Yamaha.
Cairoli and Philippaerts.
Antonio Cairoli - Yamaha.
Tony Cairoli and David Philippaerts.
Antonio Cairoli - Yamaha.
Josh Coppins - Yamaha.
Josh Coppins celebrates 2008 MX1 victory (Pic: CDS).
Tyla Rattray and Antonio Cairoli.
Antonio Cairoli – Yamaha.
Antonio Cairoli – Yamaha.
MX2-GP World Champion Antonio Cairoli recently took delivery of Yamaha’s extreme 4x4 Rhino.
Antonio Cairoli – Yamaha.
Toni Cairoli – Yamaha.

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