Drama, drama and more drama was the story of a quite compelling 2018 Newcomers A Manx Grand Prix, which saw Irish roads front runner Thomas Maxwell secure class victory.
Prior to taking control of the race, lap 1 saw practice week leader Michael Browne originally set a soaring pace, holding a five second plus lead at Ballaugh Bridge, before retiring at Sulby Cross Roads.
Browne’s retirement left Chris Preston backed Nathan Harrison in the lead. Brother of Tommy club member Glenn Harrison, the amiable Manxman held at the end of lap 1 an advantage of 10.220 over eventual victor Maxwell.
Just as it seemed as though Harrison was on course for a hugely popular win, cruel misfortune struck with the GSX-R 600 Suzuki mounted racer a confirmed retirement at Cronk Urley.
Confirmed new race leader at Ballaugh Bridge Maxwell, from here wasn’t headed for the remainder of the race, despite coming under sustained pressure from Steven Haddow.
Photo by Nick Wheeler
Scotsman Haddow, just 6.3 behind Maxwell at the conclusion of lap 2, upon leaving the pits at the end of his scheduled pit stop, incurred a 30 second speeding penalty.
Just 12.842 behind Maxwell on the final result sheets, if it wasn’t for the speeding penalty, the Projects on Track backed racer, who banked the quickest lap speed of the race, lapping on lap 4 at 116.188 mph, would have emerged victorious by plus 12 seconds.
Concluding the podium finishers was the RAF’s James Field, whilst Arnie Shelton, Grant Gaskell and John Pilloud additionally all enjoyed strong races in acquiring respectively fourth, fifth, sixth place finishes.
Finalising the top ten finishers were James Reveley, Andrew McAllister, Alan Johnston and seasoned IRRC competitor Herve Somson.
Remaining finishing from one of the most dramatic Newcomers A races of recent times, were Lloyd Collins, Ben Plant, David Murphy, Paul Fallon and James Buchanan.
Words by Stevie Rial