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NW200: Seeley has Dunlop's record in his sights

Tyco BMW's Alastair Seeley can draw level with Robert Dunlop's all-time record of victories at this year's North West 200
Tyco BMW's Alastair Seeley is targeting a treble at this year's Vauxhall International North West 200 in May, which would put the double British champion level with Robert Dunlop's all-time record.

Dunlop, killed during practice for the famous Irish road race in 2008, remains the most successful rider ever with 15 victories, but Seeley is edging ever closer to equalling the Ulster legend's benchmark, claiming a double in 2014 to move onto 12 wins since he made his debut in 2004.

The 35-year-old, who has switched back to the Pirelli National Superstock 1000 Championship this year with Northern Ireland's TAS Racing team, said of his prospects: “I'm not a kick in the arse off it now and if I had a good week maybe I could match it.

“It would be great to equal the record at least. If it happens, it happens but it is getting tougher every year. Apart from the roads boys there are more and more BSB riders coming to the North West every year.

“Once they get their heads around the idea that the course is big long straights into tight chicanes they realise that it is the Coast Road section that takes the most learning.”

Seeley heads into the first international road race of the season as the favourite but the Carrick rider is at ease with the pre-race hype.

“I suppose I have started as favourite for the last few years which means I usually have a target on my back,” Seeley said.

“I try to not let that affect me because it can put pressure on you if you think like that and I ride better if I am relaxed.

“I am back with a team that I am comfortable with and things are going pretty good in the British series,” he added.

“We have a good test schedule in place. We were out at Kirkistown for two days last week and I will ride my new Superbike soon so everything is going to plan.”

Seeley will compete in both Superbike and Superstock races at the North West 200 plus the Supersport class, when he is expected to ride a GSX-R600 Suzuki in the Tyco colours.

“I need to get a good set up on my big bike this year as they can be a bit of a handful when the tyres start to go off,” Seeley said.

“With Tyco having two riders in BSB I will get all the information and loads of help from them when I jump on the superbike.

“A good qualifying is not so important at the North West because you can come from the middle of the pack with the slipstreaming effect but you still need to be in the right place coming on to the Coast Road if you are going to win.”

The 2015 North West 200 takes place from May 11-16 on the 8.9-mile 'Triangle' course on the north coast of Ireland.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Alastair Seeley on the Tyco BMW
Action from the 2016 North West 200
Michael Dunlop on the Team Classic Suzuki XR69 during the Classic Superbike race at the Classic TT.
Michael Dunlop on the Black Eagle MV Agusta at the Classic TT.
Michael Dunlop on the Black Eagle MV Agusta at the Classic TT.
Bruce Anstey won the Lightweight race at the Classic TT on the Padgetts Honda RS250.
John McGuinness on the Winfield Paton at the Classic TT.
Bruce Anstey on the Padgetts RS250 Honda at the Classic TT.
Dean Harrison on the Silicone Engineering Kawasaki at the Classic TT.
Bruce Anstey on the Padgetts RS250 Honda at the Classic TT.
Michael Dunlop on the Team Classic Suzuki XR69 at the Classic TT.
Michael Dunlop on the Team Classic Suzuki XR69 during practice for the Classic TT.
Michael Dunlop
Gary Johnson
Ian Lougher, Dean Harrison and Lee Johnston in the winners` enclosure following the 2015 500cc Classic TT
Tyco BMW`s Ian Hutchinson
Bruce Anstey on the YZR500 Yamaha at the Classic TT.
Ian Hutchinson leads Michael Dunlop in the Superbike class at the Ulster Grand Prix.

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