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Michael Dunlop with fastest lap on way to Super double

By Roy Harris

Published 12/08/2016

Out in front: Michael Dunlop on his way to pole position success at Dundrod
Out in front: Michael Dunlop on his way to pole position success at Dundrod

Michael Dunlop will start tomorrow's MCE Ulster Grand Prix Superbike and Superstock races from pole after producing scintillating runs which included the fastest lap of the week.

In the Superbikes, Dunlop had a stunning 40 minute qualifying session. Ian Hutchinson and Peter Hickman both took spells at the front before the Hawk BMW of Dunlop, on his ninth of 10 laps, went round the 7.4 mile Dundrod circuit in 3m22.181secs, a speed of 131.783mph and fastest lap of the week.

Hickman, a Superbike winner last year, was just a 10th of a second behind at 131.063mph with the superb sounding RCV Honda of Kiwi Bruce Anstey third fastest and Hutchinson fourth.

Dunlop said: "I'm okay with the way that session went but we have a few wee tweaks here and there before we'll be happy.

"We are all chasing the perfect setting, yes we'll take pole position and see where it takes us. It just wasn't a 100% dry out there and you had to be careful."

Superstock machines got things under way at Dundrod yesterday after a two-hour delay due to low cloud and Michael Dunlop emerged from the gloom to top the time sheets in the final few moments of the 30 minute session with a speed of 121.625mph, one and a half seconds faster than Derek Sheils who had set his fastest lap of 120.779mph just seconds before.

Australian David Johnson crashed his Wilson Craig Honda at Quarterlands and was transferred to the Royal Victoria Hospital with concussion and a possible back injury.

Pole position for tomorrow's Supersport races will be filled by Anstey, 1.766secs clear of Hutchinson.

The session was cut short when John Walsh crashed heavily at Flow Bog, the Faugheen rider taken to hospital with a broken arm and possible fractures.

UGP Superbike Qualifying: 1st M. Dunlop 131.783mph, 2nd P. Hickman 131.063, 3rd B. Anstey 130.220, 4th I. Hutchinson 130.136, 5th D. Harrison 129.921, 6th C. Cummins 129.335

UGP Superstock Qualifying speeds: 1st M. Dunlop 121.625mph, 2nd D. Sheils 120.779, 3rd S. Mercer 120.718, 4th J. Coward 120.192, 5th C. Cummins 119.926, 6th B. Anstey 119.508

Supersport Qualifying: 1st B. Anstey 125.944mph, 2nd I. Hutchinson 124.901, 3rd C. Cummins 124.530, 4th D. Harrison 124.118, 5th W. Dunlop 123.655, 6th P. Hickman 123.590

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