Dominant Harrison is starting to showcase his true quality at Southern 100 Road Races
Red Flags and stoppages were the order of play at last night’s Southern 100 Road Races on the Isle of Man, with Honda TT star Conor Cummins reported to have broken an arm in the 600cc race.
But the aforementioned drama didn’t stop Bradford’s Dean Harrison — riding for Northern Ireland-based Mar-Train Racing — clocking up a brace of wins, to make it three so far this week at the ‘Friendly Races’ on the Billown Circuit.
“It’s been a good start to the week for me,” said the fast talking Yorkshireman. “I got good starts in both races and once I got to the front it was steady. Let’s hope we can keep it going,” he added.
The 25-year-old, who won Tuesday night’s Senior Solo Founders Superbike encounter, backed it up with his second open class victory aboard the RC Express Kawasaki.
Guy Martin retired with a sick Tyco Suzuki in the early laps and with Michael Dunlop uncharacteristically struggling on the big BMW, it was left to Irish Superbike Championship leader Dan Kneen to take the fight to Harrison.
Kneen finished impressively in second place aboard the Cookstown B.E Racing Suzuki, just a whisker ahead of Michael Dunlop, but the top step was reserved for Harrison — who also set a new track lap record on his fourth lap of seven with a new best of 113.473mph.
Despite taking third place, Dunlop lamented afterwards: “We’ve just got no poke in this thing. I can’t get off the turns.
“It just doesn’t suit me around here at the minute but we will be stronger on Thursday as we are making changes all the time.”
Scarborough specialist Ivan Lintin, who later crashed in a four-rider pile up in the 600cc race, won the 250cc/650cc Supertwins race.
But his victory wasn’t so popular with the class lap record holder at the Southern, Jamie Hamilton, who is convalescing at home following an incident at Skerries last weekend.
After losing his lap record to Lintin, who upped it to 103.458mph in last night’s race, the injured Wilson Craig racing pilot commented on social media: “That Tigcraft 650 is a joke,” having a sideswipe at the legality of Lintin’s machine.
Harrison came home in second place in the restarted Supertwins encounter, which saw only two quarter-litre machines on the grid, with James Cowton third — the east Yorkshire joiner also a faller in the 600c race.
After a lengthy delay for an incident at Ballakeighan which saw Cummins and Tom Parkes airlifted to Nobles Hospital, the restarted Radcliffe Butcher’s 600cc race produced yet another stunning display from Harrison.
This time around the TT Supertwin winner had changed into his Mar-Train Racing leathers — unaware that team owner Tim Martin was listening in and chewing his nails to the quick from his favourite family restaurant in Majorca.
Martin need not have worried, as it proved to be yet another clinical display from Harrison, who grabbed the seven-lap encounter by the scruff of the neck, increasing his lead mile-on-mile to take a three second win over Tyco Suzuki’s Guy Martin.
Cookstown B.E Racing’s Dan Kneen took a fine third place, well ahead of Russ Mountford, Ryan Kneen and Seamus Elliott. Michael Dunlop was a non-starter, pulling his bike off the grid just before the off.
The Sidecar race was won by Ian and Carl Bell on the LCR 600cc Yamaha, but they nearly didn’t make the grid, when Carl mistimed his pre-race shower and was ‘soaped-up’ when he should have been on the grid.
TT legend Davy Molyneux was back on the Southern 100 podium after an 11-year sabbatical, along with passenger Benjamin Binns taking second. The 17-time TT winner was one rung higher on the podium than Conrad Harrison and Jason Crowe.
The 2014 Southern 100 concludes today with a full programme of racing as follows: 10.15am Race 7B 600cc B Race; 11.00am Race 7 600cc Race ; 11.45am Race A Sidecar Consolation Race; 1.20pm Race 8 250/650cc Race; 2.10pm Race 9 125/400cc Race; 3.00pm Race 10 Solo Championship Race; 3.50pm Race 11 Sidecar Championship Race; 4.30pm Race B Senior Support Consolation Race.