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William Dunlop tastes success on Supertwin debut

'It was a bit of fun out there and the main priority was to get some more mileage under my belt' - William Dunlop
William Dunlop utilised Saturday's non-championship Irish Open short circuit meeting at Nutts Corner in Northern Ireland to put in more laps on the Kawasaki ER6 Supertwin he will ride at the Isle of Man in TT June.

Dunlop took a brace of race wins on the Emerald Road Racing-backed 650cc twin and the 26-year-old, who will again ride for Wilson Craig's Honda outfit in 2012, also competed in the opening Superbike race, finishing in eighth place overall on the ER6.

The bike was previously raced by rising young road racing prospect Wayne Hamilton from Portadown, who was tragically killed in a crash at the Manx Grand Prix last year.

"The idea was just to get some more track time in on the wee bike," Dunlop said. "It was a bit of fun out there and the main priority was to get some more mileage under my belt before the racing starts proper at Easter."

Former 250cc British champion Woolsey Coulter was also among the entries at Nutts Corner.

The five-times North West 200 winner will contest the Ducati 848 Challenge series this year and also intends to return to the NW200 in May at the age of 48.

Coulter is best remembered for his prowess in the 250cc class at the North West, where he won his last race in 1998 - the same season he secured the 250cc British title.

The Co Armagh rider was a double winner in the class at the high-speed Portstewart-Coleraine-Portrush circuit in 1996 and tasted success again in the two-stroke class in '94.

He hopes to ride the same Kawasaki ER6 Supertwin that Dunlop will ride in the reintroduced Lightweight TT.

The class has already attracted an impressive line-up at the North West, with Ryan Farquhar, Jeremy McWilliams, Michael Dunlop, Simon Andrews, Ian Lougher, Adrian Archibald, Kirk Jamison and Jamie Hamilton among the entries.

World Superbike star Jonathan Rea's brother Richard won both Open Superbike races on Saturday on the Rea Racing BMW at Nutts Corner.



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
William Dunlop - Wilson Craig Honda [pic credit: Glynne Lewis]
Ivan Lintin
Derek McGee on the WCR Honda Supersport machine
Derek McGee on the Wilson Craig Honda
Jamie Hamilton at the North West 200
Ryan Farquhar
Dan Kneen on the Padgetts Honda at the North West 200
Keith Amor leads Gary Johnson at the North West 200
James Hillier
Stephen Thompson
Mar-Train Racing`s Dean Harrison
Gary Johnson at the North West 200
Gary Johnson at the North West 200
Ian Hutchinson on the PBM Kawasaki at the North West 200
Ryan Farquhar leads Jamie Hamilton and Jeremy McWilliams at the North West 200 in the Supertwin class
Alastair Seeley celebrates victory in the Superbike race at the North West 200
John McGuinness at the North West 200 on his Superstock Honda
Lee Johnston on the ECC/Burdens BMW at the North West 200

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