24-time race winner Alastair Seeley claimed pole position for the two North West 200 Supersport races with an early time in Thursday afternoon’s second qualifying session putting the IFS Racing Yamaha rider almost half a second clear of Adam McLean (McAdoo Racing Kawasaki). Davey Todd took third on the Milenco by Padgetts Honda.
Seeley made the early running with a 4’38.774s lap which was four seconds quicker than the fastest lap from Tuesday’s session but still five seconds shy of his own lap record. Nevertheless, it put him 1.1s clear of Todd with McLean and Dean Harrison (DAO Racing Kawasaki) close behind in third and fourth.
Next time around and Seeley remained on top but McLean moved into second and cut the gap to 0.4s with Todd slipping to third but also reducing the deficit to the pace setting Seeley. Just 0.6s covered the leading trio.
Michael Dunlop was up to fourth from Harrison, Hillier, Paul Jordan (Prez Racing Yamaha), Michael Sweeney (EM Building Yamaha), Conor Cummins on the second Padgetts machine and Joseph Loughlin (Team ILR/Mark Coverdale Yamaha).
Like the Superstock class, another mid-session lull followed and with a few rain spots around the course, no one improved their lap times which meant the top six remained with same with Seeley, McLean and Todd filling out row one and Dunlop, Harrison and Hillier doing likewise on row two.
Although only 11th in the session, Lee Johnston’s time from Tuesday meant he ended seventh overall which put him ahead of Jordan, Sweeney and Cummins.