Michael Dunlop crashed out of Thursday’s Senior race at the Steam Packet Isle of Man Southern 100 on Thursday as Dean Harrison completed a fantastic four-timer.
Ballymoney man Dunlop, who is competing at the 4.25-mile Billown course for the first time since 2017, came off at Castletown corner on the second lap as he held a close second place behind Silicone Engineering Kawasaki rider Harrison.
He was initially reported to be ‘okay’ during Manx Radio’s live broadcast of the meeting with no serious injuries.
However, the race organisers later confirmed the 30-year-old had sustained 'suspected minor fractures'.
The Tyco BMW rider had finished as the runner-up in the opening Senior race on Tuesday, coming home a long way down on Harrison, who has now become the third most successful rider ever at the Southern 100 with 22 victories.
Ian Lougher is the most successful rider ever at Billown with 32 wins from Joey Dunlop, who chalked up 31 victories.
Harrison followed up his Senior and Supersport wins on Wednesday with another double on Thursday morning, edging out Jamie Coward in the S&S Motors 600 race by only 0.2 seconds.
Skerries man Michael Sweeney claimed an excellent third on the Martin Jones Racing Yamaha.
He then sealed a commanding win in the second Island Aggregates Senior race after Dunlop’s crash, taking the flag well clear of Sam West in second, with Coward completing the top three on the Prez Racing Yamaha.
Harrison, who recorded the fastest lap of the race at 113.431mph, said: “It was a close race with Michael and I hope he’s all right because you never want to see anyone go down here. Well done to the marshals because they kept us well wide [of the incident] and it looks like there’s maybe some oil down.
“The bike was going really well and it’s been getting better. We’ve a few niggling issues with the throttle that we’ve had all season but around here it’s a great place to work on the bike because it’s quite similar to the TT.”
Michael Evans finished fourth on the Wilcock Consulting BMW ahead of Rob Hodson and Joe Ackroyd.
Earlier, Kells man Dennis Booth won the GH Corlett Solo Founders race on his 1000cc BMW from Jean-Pierre Polet by over five seconds for his maiden Southern 100 victory.
Booth also finished on the podium in third in the 600 ‘B’ race behind David McConnachy and Don Gilbert.
The first Sidecar race was won by Tim Reeves/Mark Wilkes from Alan Founds/Jake Lowther.
Thursday is the finale to the four-day Southern 100 meeting, with the Solo Championship race taking centre stage.
Harrison is bidding to join Joey Dunlop and Guy Martin as the only riders ever to win the prestigious race in three successive years.