Zimbabwean Shaun Whyte grabbed the lead of the Radiator SA Superbike Championship at Kyalami last month, but the First Technology Yamaha R1 rider will face a tough challenge from Hudson Kennaugh’s brand new Suzuki GSX1000 at Killarney on Saturday.
Zimbabwean Shaun Whyte grabbed the lead of the Radiator SA Superbike Championship at Kyalami last month, but the First Technology Yamaha R1 rider will face a tough challenge from Hudson Kennaugh’s brand new Suzuki GSX1000 at Killarney.
Whyte scored a victory and second place in the season-opening races at the end of February, but observers say reigning SA Superbike Champion Kennaugh’s Suzuki might have the upper hand in Rounds Three and Four of the series in Cape Town on Saturday.
Also riding a new Suzuki will be Kennaugh's Dealer Team cohort Trevor Crookes. Whyte, in turn, will be supported by his First Technology Yamaha team-mate – rising star Sheridan Morias.
Privateer Graeme van Breda, who challenged the leaders with his Suzuki GSXR1000 last time out, will also be a frontrunner.
Leading Kawasaki's onslaught on a ZX10 Ninja will be veteran Stewart MacLeod, backed by Capetonian Robert Cragg, riding his similar Mean Green Machine with backing from Cedar Vadec.
One of the surprise performances at Kyalami came from 600cc Supersport class graduate Clinton Seller, who qualified his Sell-Mar Installations Suzuki GSXR1000 on the front row of the grid for his very first Superbike race.
Seller may surprise again, as could Jason Wessels (Suzuki), Robert Portman (Dynamic Express Honda Fireblade), Noel Haarhoff (Imtech Kawasaki ZX10), plus Kreepy Krauly Bioguard Suzuki racers Daryn Upton and Garth Norris.
With 14 riders in the lineup, Kyalami's season-opening
Supersport 600 races added much spectacle to proceedings.
The same can be expected at Killarney, where Cheyne Herschel (Honda CBR600), Allan-Jon Venter (Yamaha Support R6), Robbie Breakspear (Terry Moss Yamaha R6) and Justin Fernandes (BW Tech Yamaha R6) are likely candidates for victory.
Other riders to watch include Tertius de Lange (Freightline Sandton Yamaha R6), Grant Maidment (Suzuki GSXR600) and Daryl Peel on his DNA Kawasaki ZX6RR.
Radiator SA Superbike competitors will have to complete the Saturday morning's Official Qualifing session and both of the day's races on the same set of tyres.
Therefore, tyre preservation will play a vital role in the outcome of the races, making it essential for riders and technicians to find the exact suspension setup during Friday's Practice sessions.