Belfast Telegraph

Anstey's plucky 13 as Harrison becomes world's fastest at scorching 134.614mph

 

By Roy Harris

Flying Kiwi Bruce Anstey declared his 13th Ulster Grand Prix win in the feature MMB Surfacing Superbike race as his most satisfying around Dundrod.

Anstey's victory over seven laps saw the first international road race win for the Padgetts MotoGP replica RCV Honda while the Absolute Lap Record for the 7.4mile circuit was raised to an astonishing 134.614mph by Yorkshire rider Dean Harrison.

Hot favourite Peter Hickman and Conor Cummins set the early pace in ideal conditions from Kneen, Harrison and Anstey with a gap to Derek Sheils and Michael Dunlop.

Cummins and Hickman traded the lead on lap two allowing the pursuers to close in with Anstey moving into third on lap three with a new absolute lap record of 134.235mph, which he upped a lap later to 134.396mph as he moved into second.

Anstey took the lead going through the very fast Jordan's Cross section on lap four, but it was Harrison who was flying and with an astonishing lap of 3m 17.928secs to take the absolute lap record to 134.614mph, as he moved into contention, a mere second covering the top five.

Hickman and Anstey swapped the lead constantly on the final two laps before Anstey made the decisive move to the front at Lougher's holding off a determined move by Hickman around the outside at Tornagrough to take the chequered flag 0.272secs ahead to give the Padgetts RCV Honda its first international road race win.

Harrison was a second back off Hickman in third, but now the fastest road racer in the world, with Kneen fourth, Cummins fifth and Derek Sheils a terrific sixth, as the top 10 finishers all set fastest laps at over 130mph, in fact the top five averaged over 133mph such was the pace.

A beaming Anstey said: "Of all my wins around Dundrod that one is probably the most satisfying. It's a first for the RCV. We knew it was there and it was just perfect. I haven'y had the best of seasons but this win makes up for all the poor results."

In the Around A Pound final Superbike race of the day Hickman led at the end of lap one, but the engine of the Smiths BMW let go at Leathemstown and he was out in a cloud of smoke.

With Anstey already sidelined, it all came down to the Lindsay Hairpin with Kneen in the lead, but he left the slightest gap on the inside and Harrison went through it, forcing both wide.

Harrison had the better line and held off Kneen's challenges through the Quarries to win by a 10th of a second.

Harrison commented: "To be fastest man in the world and to win my first Superbike international road race is a massive day for me and the team."

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