After the disappointing cancellation of racing at kells, cookstown burrows engineering racing were keen to succeed at the 70th skerries road races and with an in-form derek sheils at the helm of superbike, supersport and supertwin machinery, they were not frustrated in north county dublin.
Despite only getting two laps of practice on the cookstown burrows engineering suzuki 1000 due to a burst water hose, sheils finished a close second to michael dunlop in the superbike race and thereby extended his comfortable lead in the irish superbike championship points standings. William dunlop was third in a race which was held in damp but fast drying conditions .
Sheils led for most of the race, but tt hero dunlop pounced on the dubliner in the closing stages. In hindsight, full slicks would have been the best choice of tyres, as sheils' front intermediate diminished in the final few miles.
Rain fell heavily later in the day and the fans were denied another sheils versus dunlop clash in the grand final when officials decided to call a halt to proceedings.
Sheils finished second in the wet supertwins race just behind former cookstown burrows engineering racing rider michael sweeney who enjoyed a win in his backyard. Paul jordan completed the top three ahead of michal dokoupil. The result thrusts sheils firmly into irish supertwins championship contention along with sweeney and dokoupil.
A dry supersport 600 race at skerries was a cracker and at the conclusion just four seconds covered the top four with william dunlop beating derek mcgee, michael dunlop and cookstown burrows engineering honda equipped sheils.
Team owner john burrows was happy with the way things went at skerries, commenting: "Derek might have been able to take the superbike win if he hadn't eased his pace at mid- distance and if the gsxr had been fitted with full slicks. However, conditions were constantly changing and it dried up quickly and michael dunlop took full advantage. Still, it's no disgrace to finish behind the isle of man tt lap record holder and second place keeps us well on course for the irish superbike title which is very important.
"Derek is also in a strong position in the supertwins title race so at the end of the season it's possible that we will have a double title success to celebrate. However, there are other good riders in with a shout so we know we have to focus hard in every race ahead.
"Derek's fourth in the supersport race was actually the most pleasing result of the day for me. Derek doesn't really consider himself a supersport front runner but to finish only four seconds down on supersport expert william dunlop is some going in my opinion.
"Next weekend derek will be in action at walderstown and I expect him to feature in all the classes he contests."