The Triumph Motorcycles Superbike/SBK Challenge/Masters/600 races at Round 4 of the 2023 Power Series presented by Wingfield Motors and Smile 90.4 FM at Killarney on Saturday 22 April were a 600cc benefit as the wet conditions negated the huge power advantage of the litre-class machines.

Jason Linaker (RST Honda CBR600) and Slade ‘Wild Child’ van Niekerk on the Project Sixty SA ZX-6R took the fight to Master of Masters Malcom Rapson’s Racebase GSX-R1000 in a thrilling Race 1 that saw Linaker hold off a late move from Rapson to win by 0.019sec, with Van Niekerk third, just 1.057sec further back.

Daniel Frost on the CHW Design Fireblade was the first Challenge rider home in sixth overall, behind another two 600cc riders – Jamie Hall on the MGA Racing R6 and Keana Strode’s Kawasaki ZX-6R.

Van Niekerk fitted full wets for Race 2 – and romped away to win by 25 seconds from Rapson, Hall and Linaker, while veteran Wayne Arendse (JJ Smith Trust ZX-10R) won the Challenge category by surviving five difficult laps on a streaming wet circuit, just 0.384sec ahead of Deuse Express Fireblade rider Brad Bodsworth.

Classic BMW R1100S riders William Morries and Mario Ferreira showed what pliant suspension and linear power delivery can do on a wet circuit as they led the first South Motorcycles Clubman/Classic Superbikes & Breakfast Run race from the more modern Clubman superbikes, until John Kosterman’s Suzuki GSX-R1100 ‘slab-side’ highsided coming out of Interceptor Corner on lap five, viciously spitting Kosterman off and bringing out the red flags.

The resulting four-lap sprint to the finish was won by Ferreira, five seconds ahead of Norman McFadden (father of David ‘McFlash’ McFadden) on a first-generation Yamaha R6, with MGA Racing’s Shandin Thompson third, also on an R6.

Ferreira got a poor start in Race 2, fifth at the end of lap one behind Wayne Gresse on the Tony’s Motor Spares R1, McFadden, Jayson Bulterman (Power Steering Solutions F800) and Derek Hendricks’ Bikers Delight R6. He immediately went on the charge, cutting through the newer bikes to third on lap two, only to put it down in Quarry Corner on lap four.

Team-mate Morries then took up the chase, from seventh on lap one to third on lap six, but couldn’t reel in Bulterman in second before the flag came out, while Breakfast Runner Dyllan Anderson (Yamaha R6) finished a surprise fifth overall, 14 seconds behind McFadden.

Jamie Hall was out again for the Bridgestone STC 650/SSP300 races, this time on the MGA Racing ER650, leading Race 1 from lights to flag with Zante Otto and the Missile Motorcycles SV650 right on his tail the whole way.

The only other rider on the lead lap at the flag was SSP300 rider Raymond Alexander, riding the race of his life on the Microil Ninja 300 to finish ahead of pre-race favourite Nicholas Hutchings on the HSC Racing SV650. Fifth overall and second in the SSP300 class was the unbreakable Abigail Bosson, despite a nasty crash on the Ateka/Project Sixty R3 in Qualifying.

Race 2 was set to be a  repeat of the earlier outing, with Otto chasing Hall for all she was worth, until the MGA rider crashed out on lap four, gifting the lady an unchallenged race win and the top honours for the day. Astonishingly, Alexander on the 300cc Ninja ran second until the very last lap, when Ryan Coetzee (Project Sixty ER650) blitzed him on the line to take second by just 0.031sec, with Bosson fourth and second in class, ahead of Hutchings, who finished fifth overall and second in the big class.