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Successful year for Ballymoney racer Tweed

Ballymoney and motor racing have alway gone hand in hand with many great racers coming out of or from around the small town. This includes young Darryl Tweed, who in recent years has put name well and truly on the motorcycle racing map.

Darryl, 28, had a great season in 2018 starting off with a 2nd in The Superbike B race at the Cookstown 100.

At the NW200, Tweed qualified for the Supersport races in the middle of the grid and finished 18th in Thursday nights race and 21st in Saturdays race. The eventual winner in both races being Alastair Seeley.

Darryl Tweed, NW200 2018. Credit: Chris Shaw Photography

Gaining a 1st at the Tandragee 100 in the Lightweight race, Tweeds season continued to get better and at the Walderstown Road Races he may not have made it into the top three in any race but gained a 4th in the Supersport, a 6th in the Superbike and in the Grand final race took 5th place. Faugheen 50 Road Race saw Tweed’s take 2nd in the Moto 3/Lightweight Supersport race.

Darryl’s local circuit, just a few miles from his hometown, is the Armoy Road Races and at the official launch of this ‘Race of Legends’ last year, Darryl was in attendance but had to hobble on stage after breaking his ankle, which he had ran over a few weeks earlier with his own bike.Despite this he was confident it would be healed enough in time to race at Armoy.

Speaking at the launch, Darryl told the audience that his initial interest was in motocross but at aged 25 made the switch to road racing. Asked what he liked about th Armoy Road Races he simply said it was;

“easy going and like a big family.”

Unfortunately success wasn’t to be as the Armoy meeting, which took place on 27th & 28th July, was eventually cancelled due to safety concerns over track conditions due to severe weather.

Clerk of the Course at the time Bill Kennedy speaking after the race meeting said;

“It’s safe to say the 10th anniversary will be one to remember and not for the reasons we had hoped. To say I was disappointed with the conditions on the day, is an understatement. But looking back, I know the right decision was made in the interest of safety.

It’s safe to say the 10th anniversary will be one to remember and not for the reasons we had hoped. To say I was disappointed with the conditions on the day, is an understatement. But looking back, I know the right decision was made in the interest of safety.”

Despite the disappointment at the Armoy races, young Tweed would finish the 2018 season on a high at the Manx Grand Prix (MGP) with a double win in the two Ultra Lightweight races on both Wednesday and Friday.

This double success would be recognised at this years Motorcycle Union of Irelands (MCUI) Ulster Branch, among other awards, on Friday 11th January which was held at La Mon House Hotel.

At the awards ceremony Darryl won the ‘Irish & Ulster Road Racing Lightweight Supersport Championship’, the trophy for ‘Most Improved Road Racer 2018’ and 3rd in the ‘Irish & Ulster Short Circuit Championship.

Darryl was also recognised for what will undoubtably be his 2018 highlight, his double win at the 2018 MGP.

Darryl, who races for M&D racing on the Kawasaki, will no doubt be looking to capitalise on last years success and with all eyes on him this season as one of the most improved young riders from 2018, the 2019 season looks to bring great success yet again and hopefully more wins.

Darryl Tweed, NW200 2018. Credit: Chris Shaw Photography
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