Mixed Conditions Dominate ‘Manx’ Practice
After the opening untimed practice, it was ‘down to business’ as the timed sessions commenced on Monday evening, with conditions favourable, as they were on Tuesday, when most of the quickest lap times were recorded.
Wednesday provided conditions that prompted the Clerk of the Course, to announce a one lap untimed practice for all classes, which saw just 157 riders and machines circulating the Snaefell Mountain Course. Such were the conditions the following day that the session was cancelled two hours prior to roads closing time.
Friday brought wet roads and strong winds, whilst the final full session was not much better.
Only one existing lap record was unofficially broken during the week, the Senior Classic, where Ryan Farquhar took 27 seconds off his own record set in 2007 on the Italian Paton machine.
The Dungannon man also featured at the head of the new Post Classic times in the 4-stroke class with a lap at 101.918mph, on Friday, on the ‘big’ Suzuki, whilst Blackpool’s Roy Richardson set the quickest speed in the 2-stroke category at 111.480mph on the 250 Yamaha on Tuesday evening.
Douglas resident Sean Murphy did a sub-twenty minute lap on Tuesday to top the Newcomers A class on his 600 Martin Bullock Honda with a time of 19m 26.54s a speed of 116.436mph.
Arbroath’s Andy Lawson also set his fastest lap of the week on Tuesday and took the ‘pole position’ in the Newcomers B race with a 21m 53.78s lap with equates to 103.387mph.
Six times previous winner, Roy Richardson set the quickest lap in the Junior Classic on Monday evening. Riding the 348cc Bullock/FCL Aermacchi he took 22m 39.67s to lap the 37.73-mile course and record a speed of 99.898mph.
Scot, Ewan Hamilton who is riding in his 23rd consecutive ‘Manx’ and having achieved back to back victories in the Lightweight Classic in 2007 & 2008, is looking for a hat-trick this year, also set the fastest lap of the class on Monday with a 92.259mph lap (24m32.24s).
The ‘first Grand Prix’ of 2009, the Junior is headed by the winner of the Newcomers A race twelve months ago, Manxman Ryan Kneen, who put in a lap of 19m 17.33s on Tuesday, which also topped the Senior speeds for part of the week!
Winner of the Senior Classic race for the past two years, Ryan Farquhar put up the fastest lap of the week on Monday evening, lapping in 20m 25.40s a speed of 110.844mph.
Olie Linsdell, on a similar machine also put up his quickest lap on Monday, as did Alan Oversby on the wonderful sounding MV Agusta. The Brian Richards Italian fire-engine topped both the Classic Junior and Senior times on Friday evening with speed of 93.769mph & 101.644mph.
Fellow Manxie Dan Sayle, winner of the Lightweight Manx Grand Prix last year plans to keep hold of the trophy as he tops the lap times this year, having set the pace on Tuesday with a time of 19m 50.46sa speed of 114.097mph.
In the concurrently run Ultra Lightweight race, Belfast’s Joe Phillips heads to table with yet another lap set on Tuesday in 21m 01.77s to record a speed of 107.649mph.
Finally to the ‘blue-riband’ race, the Senior Manx Grand Prix, Cumbrian rider Scott Wilson took his 750cc Diamond H Serverlite Racing Suzuki round in 19m 14.83s on Tuesday to record a speed of 117.618mph.