Glenn Irwin’s BSB Oulton Park tenure opened in impressive fashion, with a strong run to third on the first practice times sheet.
Heading into this weekend’s competition holding a 35 point Championship lead over 2017 Senior Classic TT winner Josh Brookes, the four times North West 200 winner looks again to be in good harmony with his Honda Racing steed.
World’s fastest road racer Peter Hickman, ON1 Racing’s Brian McCormack respectively placed 15th, 26th quickest whilst opening British Supersport qualifying sessions saw the likes of recently crowned Steve Henshaw Gold Cup winner Lee Johnston, 24 times North West 200 victor Alastair Seeley impress.
Ashcourt Racing’s fourth fastest in Supersport FP1, went onto finish nearest pursuer to runaway Championship leader Rory Skinner in FP2.
For fellow countryman Seeley, opening timed practice would see him head the British GP2 class pace, plus finish overall fifth fastest.
Whilst free practice two yielded the 11th quickest time overall, third fastest in terms of GP2 competitors.
Superstock 1000’s wise, 16 times TT winner Ian Hutchinson quietly caught the eye, placing 4th, 11th quickest from the timed practice stints.
Photo by Tommy Vennard
Reigning Senior TT Champion Dean Harrison back on purpose built circuit racing duty, after the 69th Gold Cup meeting at Scarborough finished respectively 13th, 17th on the Stock 1000 times sheets.
19 times TT winner Michael Dunlop also competing this weekend in the aforementioned Supersport class, latest venture with the Hawk Racing ran Buildbase Suzuki squad opened with respective 14th, 21st fastest practice runs.
23 times TT victor John McGuinness, Immingham’s Craig Neve placed 7th, 10th quickest within Ducati TriOptions Cup qualifying whilst added prominent road racers in action today were:
Current IRRC Superbike Champion Davey Todd, Steve Henshaw Gold Cup podium finisher Joe Thompson, Junior Manx GP runner-up Stephen Smith, Sam West, Joe Loughlin, DC Racing’s Mike Norbury, Oulton Park debutant Damon Rees and pure road racing’s sole Superstock 600 exponent Binch Racing’s Adam McLean.
Words by Stevie Rial