Michael Dunlop on cloud nine after 'Race of Legends' domination at Armoy
Michael Dunlop ruthlessly brushed aside the opposition to seal a record ninth straight ‘Race of Legends’ victory on Saturday to complete a five-timer at the Armoy Road Races.
Dunlop followed up his victories in the Supersport and Open A Superbike races on Saturday with a clinical success in the showpiece race, which was delayed by over an hour following a red-flag incident on the warm-up lap.
Irish rider Joe Loughlin came off at Church Bends and was airlifted to hospital by the NI Air Ambulance with chest and leg injuries, although he was described as ‘alert and talking’ at the scene.
The 32-year-old also won the first Supersport race on Friday night and the Lightweight Supersport event on Mark Kelly’s RS250 Honda.
Dunlop has now won a record 24 times at Armoy following his Saturday treble, with 16 of those wins coming in the Superbike category since his first success in the class in 2011.
When the feature race got under way, Derek McGee shot into the lead by 1.5s on his Kawasaki, but Dunlop – who started from fifth on row two – was ahead by the end of lap two, immediately pulling a gap of two seconds on the chasing pack.
The Ballymoney man continued to disappear into the distance on the SYNETIQ BMW, building a lead of more than 10 seconds before easing off on the seventh and final lap to win by 9.3s.
Dunlop earlier set a new Superbike lap record in the Open race of 106.945mph as he gave the new M1000RR its maiden Irish road racing win.
Davey Todd got the better of McGee for second place on the Wilson Craig Honda, with Michael Sweeney in fourth on his MJR BMW.
Phil Crowe was fifth on his BMW with Cork’s Mike Browne rounding out the top six.
Derek Sheils, second in the earlier Superbike race, was a retirement on his Roadhouse Macau BMW.
Paul Jordan was a non-starter after developing issues with the Burrows Engineering/RK Racing Suzuki.