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Classic TT: Michael Dunlop sets pace but Bruce Anstey out of luck on factory YZR500 Yamaha

Michael Rutter (Ripley Land G50 Matchless) and Michael Dunlop (Molnar Manx Norton) during practice for the Classic TT Races on Monday

Michael Rutter (Ripley Land G50 Matchless) and Michael Dunlop (Molnar Manx Norton) during practice for the Classic TT Races on Monday

 

Northern Ireland’s Michael Dunlop wasted no time in making his mark on the opening night of practice for the Classic TT Races.

Dunlop clocked the fastest lap on the Team Classic Suzuki at 117.191mph to head the times from team-mate Lee Johnston, who lapped at 116.093mph.

New Zealand’s Bruce Anstey was the main focus of attention on Monday night as the Ulster Grand Prix ‘Man of the Meeting’ fired up the ex-Grand Prix Padgetts Racing YZR500 Yamaha.

Anstey, though, only got as far as Ramsey on the factory two-stroke machine and will be hoping for better luck on Tuesday evening.

Behind Dunlop and Johnston, Steve Mercer on the Mistral Racing Kawasaki posted a lap at 115.866mph.

Ian Lougher (106.584mph) topped the evening’s F2 leaderboard from Roy Richardson (104.864mph) with Chris Moore (104.831mph) third fastest in the class.

Morecambe’s John McGuinness, hoping to put the problems he experienced in last year’s Classic TT behind him, set an opening lap of 104.599mph in the 500cc session on the Team Winfield Paton and improved to 107.652mph to edge team-mate Ryan Farquhar (104.353mph), with Michael Dunlop third at 102.962mph on the Molnar Manx Norton.

Michael Rutter, a late replacement for the injured Dan Kneen on the G50 Matchless, broke down near Bishops Court on his opening lap.

The session was also notable for eight-time TT race winner Charlie Williams’ first competitive Mountain Course lap since 1984.

In the 350cc class, Alan Oversby was the only rider over 100mph (100.046mph) to lead the way from Blackpool’s Roy Richardson (98.759mph) on the 1968 Aermacchi and Ballyclare’s Jamie Hamilton.

A number of incidents were reported, with John Barton suffering a broken collarbone following an incident at Creg-ny-Baa while Farquhar was amongst a number of fallers at Governors, escaping unhurt.

 
 
 

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