Dominant Dean Harrison joined Joey Dunlop and Guy Martin as the only riders ever to win the blue riband Solo Championship race at the Southern 100 three years in succession on Thursday.
Harrison has been unbeatable at the 2019 meeting and was in a different class on his Silicone Engineering Kawasaki as he romped to a sensational sixth victory of the week at the Billown course to claim the £3,500 top prize.
With Michael Dunlop absent from the feature race following his earlier crash in the Senior event, Harrison grabbed the lead from the off and effectively put the race to bed after only two laps of the 4.25-mile course, pulling a gap of 5.3 seconds.
He increased his advantage to more than 15 seconds over Manx rider Ryan Kneen after five laps of the scheduled nine-lap distance and could afford to roll off on the final laps.
Harrison sealed his third Solo victory on the spin from Kneen and Rob Hodson, cementing his place as the third most successful rider ever at Billown with 24 wins. Only Ian Lougher with 32 victories and Joey Dunlop (31) are ahead of the Bradford man on the roll of honour.
Harrison, who clinched trebles in the Supersport and Superbike classes to make it a clean sweep of all six races he entered, said: “It’s been great and the weather wasn’t looking the best at the start of the week, but the sun is shining now and we’re winning races.
“The team is brilliant and it’s just a shame that Michael Dunlop had a bit of a spill and I hope he’s okay. My bike was brilliant and it’s probably the best bike on the grid to be fair,” he added.
“Massive thanks to all the crowd all around the track and the marshals as well, it was great to see them all enjoying themselves.”
Harrison won both Supersport races on Thursday, beating Jamie Coward and Michael Sweeney in the S&S Motors 600 race and repeating the feat in the Bettridges of Foxdale Car Sales 600 race, with Coward and Sweeney again the top three.
Dominic Herbertson made it a double in the Supertwin class, taking victory by 19 seconds from Sweeney. Yorkshireman Coward did not compete in the race due to the damage his KTS Kawasaki sustained when he crashed out of the lead of the opening race on Wednesday evening.
Newcomer Xavier Denis finished third, while Rob Hodson retired from second position.
The Sidecar Championship race was won by Peter Founds/Jevon Walmsley, who narrowly held off John Holden/Lee Cain by only 0.131 seconds.
Tim Reeves/Mark Wilkes’ hopes of a second win were thwarted when they jumped the start. They incurred a ten-second time penalty but were later forced out with a mechanical issue.