2018 Winner Caolán Irwin
 

2018 Young Motorcycle Racer of the Year award winner – CAOLÁN IRWIN

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Caolán Irwin became the third winner of the Masters Young Racer of the Year award following an end of season shoot-out between the seven nominees in October 2018. The young Donegal based racer will use his award to further his career in the BSB paddock racing in the British National Superstock 600 championship. Caolán will also race at selected Masters Superbike Championship events in the Supersport class using his Superstock bike. The young racer award winner will benefit from financial support for 2019 courtesy of Dawn International, Mondello Park and European Industrial Chillers Ltd. (EICL), as well as support from the British Superbike Championship organisers who will provide free entries for the season. You will be able to follow Caolán’s progress here as the 2019 season unfolds.

CAOLÁN’S 2019 SCHEDULE

BSB SUPERSTOCK 600 & DUNLOP MASTERS SUPERSPORT DUNLOP Masters Supersport Championship – Mondello Park  April 6th – 7th British Superstock 600 – Silverstone  April 19th – 21st British Superstock 600 – Oulton Park  May 4th – 6th DUNLOP Masters Supersport Championship – Mondello Park  May 11th – 12th British Superstock 600 – Donington Park National  May 24th – 26th British Superstock 600 – Brands Hatch GP  June 14th – 16th DUNLOP Masters Supersport Championship – Mondello Park  June 22nd – 23rd British Superstock 600 – Knockhill  June 28th – 30th British Superstock 600 – Snetterton 300  July 19th – 21st DUNLOP Masters Supersport Championship – Mondello Park  July 27th – 28th British Superstock 600 – Thruxton August 2nd – 4th British Superstock 600 – Cadwell Park  August 16th – 18th DUNLOP Masters Supersport Championship – Mondello Park  August 24th – 25th British Superstock 600 – Oulton Park September 6th – 8th DUNLOP Masters Supersport Championship – Mondello Park  September 28th – 29th British Superstock 600 – Donington Park GP October 4th – 6th British Superstock 600 – Brands Hatch GP October 18th – 20th  

NEWS

21st April 2019: Young Racer of the Year, Caolán Irwin, makes a strong start to 2019 2018 Masters Superbike Championship ‘Young Racer of the Year’, Caolán Irwin, kicked off his 2019 season with a strong performance at the opening round of the British Superstock 600 championship at Silverstone on April 19th to 21st. The impressive Donegal youngster was competitive throughout the weekend, on his brand new and untested Kawasaki, and left the Northampton track full of confidence for the season ahead, despite an accident early in the race which brought his weekend to a premature end. The Donegal native will contest the extremely competitive British Superbike Championship support series with backing from the Young Racer Award sponsors, Dawn International, Mondello Park and EICL and will also have the support of the British Superbike Championship organisers. The total value of the backing provided to Irwin by the Young Racer Award during 2019 will be over €14,000. Following a late decision to switch to a new Kawasaki, Caolán arrived at Silverstone with an untested bike which was only completed in the Silverstone paddock the day before the event. With an all new suspension package still to be set up and his quick shifter not operating, Caolán’s practice and qualifying results were extremely impressive. Building his speed across each session, the Kilmacrennan based racer produced and incredible Qualifying time, under the circumstances, to line up fifth, less than six tenths off the pole sitter. Come race time, Caolán made a strong start, getting away with the leaders and slotting into fifth place. Building his speed the Young Racer winner had just set his fastest time on lap four, when a small mistake as he lined up a pass for fourth place, led to him sliding off and out of the race. Despite his early exit, fifth in qualifying and third fastest race lap, just over a tenth of a second off the fastest, left Caolán very happy with his weekends progress and looking forward to the rest of the season. Despite his crash Caolán expressed his satisfaction with the result of his opening weekend at the BSB, “That was a really positive weekend for me and the team. Coming here with an unfinished and unfamiliar bike, we thought we would be doing well to get into the top fifteen in qualifying and top ten in the race but we made excellent progress right from the start. Competing at this level is made so much easier by the support of the Young Racer programme and I’d like to thank Mondello Park, Dawn International and EICL as well as all of my other sponsors for their help in getting me back on the grid this season. Having shown such good pace this weekend I know I’ll be right in contention when we get to Oulton Park in two weeks time.” Caolán Irwin will be back in action in the British Superbike Championship for Round 2 of the National Superstock 600 championship at Oulton Park on May 4th and 5th.  
27th March 2019: Young Racer of the Year to benefit from €14,000 support package 2018 Masters Superbike Championship ‘Young Racer of the Year’ award winner, Caolán Irwin, recently put pen to paper to confirm his 2019 programme which will see him return to the British Superbike paddock, to race in the Superstock 600 class. The Donegal native will contest the extremely competitive series on a brand new Kawasaki 636, with financial backing from the Young Racer Award sponsors, Dawn International, Mondello Park and EICL. Thanks must also go to the BSB organisers who are supporting this years winner through provision of a free championship entry. The addition of the BSB support brings the total value of the award to more than €14,000. Caolán’s 2019 programme kicks off in two weeks time with the official BSB test at Silverstone on April 9th. This will be the Kilmacrennan racers’ first opportunity to sample his new machine, which is currently being built. Following the test the team will have just ten days before the championship returns to the Northampton track for the season opener. Having completed his deal with the Young Racer award organisers Caolán said “I am delighted to sign the contract to formally start my working relationship with the organisers and the associated sponsors. As I have said previously I cannot stress how crucial this award has been in the progression of my career as I prepare for a full season in the British Superstock 600 Championship. I have completed a very successful pre season testing schedule with my team which will be released in the next few weeks. I feel very proud to be representing Mondello Park and the awards sponsors this season as it is a terrific incentive by the organisers to help young Irish racers make the step up to the next level.” Irwin’s plan is to compete in all of the British Superstock series and having taken his maiden podium in 2018, and finished in the championship top ten, the Young racer of the Year’s aim is to lift the title at his second attempt. Alongside his BSB commitments, Caolán will also contest any non clashing Masters Supersport Championship rounds.
22nd November 2018: ‘Young Motorcycle Racer of the Year’ Award goes to Caolán Irwin Following a long and tense wait for the 2018 nominees, since the final shoot-out on October 24th, Caolán Irwin was announced as the recipient of the 2018 ‘Young Racer of the Year’ title at the Dunlop Masters Superbike Championship awards ceremony at the Westgrove Hotel in Clane, County Kildare on Saturday night, November 10th. Irwin, from Donegal, follows in the footsteps of previous winners, Jason Lynn and Robert English as he picks up a prize package of support worth more than €10,000, to assist him in furthering his Motorcycle Racing career. The biggest award in Irish Motorcycle Racing is in its third season and once again benefits from backing from the late Martin Birrane, who passed away in June of this year, Pat Crowley of Dawn International and Peter McMahon of European Industrial Chillers Ltd.. During 2018 the award assisted Jason Lynn to progress his career into the Thundersport GB Championship, culminating in a debut British Supersport Championship appearance at the final round in Brands Hatch in October. Caolán Irwin began 2018 with the aim of racing in the British Superbike supporting Superstock 600 championship, alongside a campaign in the Masters Supersport Championship, but date clashes saw him compete at the Masters on just two occasions. His first appearance, in April, produced three scintillating performances and a hat-trick of second place finishes, despite riding a Superstock machine against the more powerful Supersport bikes. His speed and the quality of his riding secured the ‘Young Racer of the Year’ nomination for April and a place in the October shoot-out. A second visit to Mondello Park in October produced another runner-up spot before the twenty year old finally took his maiden Supersport win in the second race of the weekend. With the seven Masters events completed and seven riders nominated, the decision on who would be crowned the 2018 Young Racer of the Year was made at a one day shoot out, which took place at Mondello Park in late October. During the shoot-out the riders were put through their paces, both on and off the track, with each nominee being assessed in a number of areas. The on-track assessment made up half of the marks awarded, with the other half being split across the two off track categories. Experienced racers Jeremy McWilliams and Jim Halligan assessed the riders ability with their bike, both in the garage and on the track, quizzing them in the garage before observing them from a number of locations around the circuit. Motorcycling journalist and track instructor Paul Browne, assessed each riders presentation of their past and future careers, while communications consultant Gerry Dawson assessed the nominees on their media skills. When the points from all categories were totaled Irwin came out on top, ahead of what judges described as the closest and best prepared field of nominees so far, having impressed the judges across all categories and scored highest in the track skills and career portions of the assessment. Following the shoot out, the participants had to wait until Saturday night’s awards ceremony to hear the result, which was announced as the final award of the night. Speaking after the announcement Caolán Irwin said, “I cant believe I’ve won this award. This will make such a difference to our plans for next year as we now have the backing to commit to returning to the BSB paddock. Finding funding for Motorcycle racing in Donegal is extremely difficult but this award will hopefully help us to secure the remaining funds we need to complete a full season again next year. I have so many people to thank, not least of all my family who have funded most of this years campaign and allowed me to be in a position to win this award. I have to thank the judges and Mondello Park for organising this fantastic competition and I’m looking forward to representing the sponsors to the best of my ability during 2019.” Jim Halligan, representing the competition judges, also had this to say about Caolán and the standard of the competition in general. “The standard was the highest we have seen so far in the competition and we believe our choice of winner should get to the very top, as will many of the nominees. But unfortunately there can only be one winner.” Mondello Park, the competitions supporters and the winner Caolán Irwin will agree a plan for the next stage of his career over the coming weeks and are all looking forward to working together to help Caolán continue his progress in the British Superstock championship.

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