The build up to the Tandragee 100 for RH Racing’s Rhys Hardisty along with much of the rest of the paddock was a solemn one as they reflected on the sad loss of rising roads star Billy Redmayne, both a close friend and firm favourite amongst fans and riders alike, following a tragic incident at the Spring Cup.
Voted as the 4th best road race in the world, the 5.3 mile circuit saw it’s 56th meeting take place in cool but dry conditions – very much the opposite of those experienced at the mud bath that was the Mid Antrim 150 just a few weeks ago.
Riding his R.E.P.S Motorcycles backed #40 Yamaha TZ250 machine in the 250cc GP class, Rhys was determined to put in a performance to be proud of – and he had reason to be confident, after picking up the ‘Best Newcomer’ award at the event in 2015.
During qualifying Rhys waited until the last of his five laps to post his fastest time, taking pole position by over half a second ahead of Davy Morgan on the DM71 Supporters Club Honda. As the four lap race started, the riders shot off for Marlacoo with Rhys at the front of the pack, Davy Morgan snapping at his heels for the duration of the race as the pair battled for the lead. Thirteen minutes later and Rhys crossed the line in 1st, to claim his second ever win at the event by the smallest of margins – just 0.265 seconds.
The Supertwins race would see Rhys piloting the McKinstry Racing Kawasaki, and he put in a superb qualifying performance to take 4th spot on the grid, close behind the likes of Ryan Farquhar and Malachi Mitchell Thomas. The race saw Rhys involved in an exciting battle with several other riders and coming away with a creditable 8th place at the end of the five lap contest.
This coming weekend Rhys and team will be at the Cookstown 100, where amongst other things they will be helping to raise money for the Billy Redmayne charity fund recently set up in his memory – and they are inviting anyone in the paddock to head over and find out more.
Congratulations to Rhys and the RH Racing team on the fantastic results at the Tandragee 100.
Many thanks to Chris Usal Photography for the use of the image.
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