NW200: Alastair Seeley claims 14th victory in Supersport thriller

Alastair Seeley wins the race.
Alastair Seeley wins the race.

Carrick’s Alastair Seeley has won his 14th race at the Vauxhall International North West 200 to become the second most successful rider ever at the event.

Seeley came out on top in a frantic battle in the Supersport race with fellow Northern Ireland riders Glenn Irwin and Lee Johnston to take the spoils.

The Tyco Suzuki rider used his experience on the final lap to lead when it mattered at the Juniper Hill Chicane, where newcomer Irwin ran onto the grass on his Gearlink Kawasaki while Johnston overshot on the brakes on the ECC/Burdens Triumph to blow his chance.

Seeley won by 2.5 seconds at the finish from the magnificent Irwin, who claimed a dream podium at the international meeting on his debut.

A disappointed Johnston took the final podium place ahead of William Dunlop (CD/IC Racing Yamaha, with Keith Amor on his Rig Deluge Honda and Dean Harrison completing the top six on the Mar-Train Yamaha.

Seeley is now only one victory behind Robert Dunlop’s all-time record of 15 successes at the North West 200.

The race was delayed after a serious accident in the Superstock event that left a female spectator in a critical condition.

Three riders were involved, with Stephen Thompson from Crumlin and Austrian rider Horst Saiger taken to hospital in Coleraine, while Dean Harrison escaped unhurt.

The Superstock race, which had been postponed from the Thursday evening schedule after Hungarian rider Sandor Bitter’s crash, was cancelled by the organisers, although a second Superstock race is still included on Saturday’s programme.