TT 2019: Harrison Takes The Biggest Prize, Gives Kawasaki First Senior Success In 44 Years!

TT 2019: Harrison Takes The Biggest Prize, Gives Kawasaki First Senior Success In 44 Years!

After a long, long two week stint for all teams, racers, what would the Dunlop Senior TT bring? 134 mph laps, drama a plenty, a new race winner? another tense, gripping last lap battle?

These was just various possibilities ahead of one of the most anticipated Senior races of recent times.

Lap 1:

Anticipated front runners Peter Hickman and Dean Harrison, swapped the race lead back and forth on lap 1, and by Ramsey Hairpin just over a tenth of a second, covered the two quickest Mountain Course exponents in history.

Known for his prowess over the Mountain, Hickman moved slightly clear of Harrison at the Bungalow and Cronk Ny Mona timing points, with the race lead jumping up to 1.4 seconds.

Come the completion of the opening lap, Hickman who lapped from a standing start at 134.28 mph, lead stood at 2.209 over Silicone Engineering Racing’s Harrison.

Milenco by Padgetts Conor Cummins held third, just over eight tenths of a second in front of Tyco BMW’s Michael Dunlop.

Photo by Mark Corlett

Superstock race rostrum finisher David Johnson was fifth, IRRC Superbike series leader Davey Todd concluded the top six.

Notable retirements on lap 1 included Norton’s John McGuinness, who took his TT podium finishes total after last nights SES TT Zero race, to an outstanding 47.

Lap 2:

Nigh on two seconds clear at Ballaugh Bridge, Hickman upped the ante on the run to Ramsey Hairpin, growing his race lead over Harrison to 3.4 seconds.

Steadily breaking away from Harrison, Hickman’s race lead cranked up to over eight seconds at the end of lap 2, as the scheduled first pit stop loomed.

Cummins remained third, Dunlop maintained fourth, whilst Penz 13 BMW’s Todd slotted into fifth place, as Honda Racing’s Johnson retired at Bedstead.

Photo by Nick Wheeler

Soon there was more disappointment for the Honda Racing squad, as Ian Hutchinson retired at the pit lane.

Others to drop out of the race on lap 2 included Rhys Hardisty, Davy Morgan and JGH Racing/SMT Racing supported Rob Hodson.

Lap 3:

Consistently over 9.5 seconds clear through Glen Helen, Ballaugh Bridge and Ramsey Hairpin, Hickman’s Mountain section bared fruit again towards the completion of lap 3, with the race lead growing to a very healthy 13.48 seconds.

Ramsey’s Cummins in third was now 27 seconds behind Harrison, whilst 19 times TT winner Dunlop in fourth place, was now 16 seconds adrift of Cummins.

Looking towards lap four, could Harrison do anything about fellow Mountain Course master Hickman? Or would drama a plenty soon arise?

Lap 4:

There was no change out front on lap 4 between the front runners, there was though major changes in the gaps between them.

Hickman looking in silky smooth, truly world class form stretched the race lead to over 14 seconds at Glen Helen, and although Harrison trimmed the lead down to almost under 12 seconds at Ramsey Hairpin, it was normal service resumed at the Bungalow, as Smiths Racing’s Hickman moved 5 seconds clear.

Concluding lap four at the pit lane, for the second scheduled pit stop, Hickman’s lead now stood at closing in on the 18 second mark.

It seemed as though Hickman was on course for a stellar defence of the Senior TT crown, he won last June in such dramatic, pulsating fashion.

Lap five was to prove crucial in the outcome of this years Senior TT, with Hickman and Harrison having very contrasting fortunes.

Lap 5:

As Hickman and Harrison made it to Glen Helen, the timing screen showed just 7.9 seconds between them, was ‘Hicky’ having problems with the Superbike spec Smiths BMW?

Photo by Mark Corlett

The answer was 100 and ten percent yes, as Harrison became the new race leader at Ramsey Hairpin, holding a 7.877 advantage over Hickman and his ailing BMW mount.

Such was Hickman’s problems, that incredibly Harrison held at the end of lap five, a race lead of roughly 18.4 seconds.

Cummins in third place, who looked like finishing a solid third, had now one eye on reeling in Hickman, who was having water heating problems.

Lap 6:

Maintaining a consistent, top class pace, there was no stopping Dean Harrison on the final lap of TT 2019, as he secured for the first time, the blue riband Senior TT crown.

Victorious by over 58 seconds, he’s now a three time TT winner, and the first racer since Mick Grant in 1975 to give Kawasaki the showpiece Senior TT title.

Despite having aforementioned major problems, Peter Hickman gritted his teeth and just kept at bay lead Honda runner Conor Cummins, to secure second place by only 5.8 seconds.

Securing fourth behind Harrison, Hickman and Cummins was Tyco BMW’s Michael Dunlop, who’s last lap saw him record a best lap speed of 131.7 mph.

Following an overshoot at Ballacraine on lap 1, that ultimately dropped him back to 11th, James Hillier battled his way to another top five finish, in front of Penz 13 BMW’s Davey Todd, who set a brilliant new personal best lap speed of 131.49 mph.

Concluding the top ten finishers were Michael Rutter and the exotic RC213V-S Honda, new 130 mph club member Jamie Coward, On 1 Racing’s Brian McCormack and Davies Motorsport’s Dominic Herbertson.

Additional notable performances included Shaun Anderson (12th), Brough’s Michael Booth (14th), Joe Akroyd (18th), David Jackson (19th), Frank Gallagher (20th) and TT newcomer Lukas Maurer a very respectable 29th.

Dunlop Senior TT race result, is as follows:

1 Dean Harrison
2 Peter Hickman
3 Conor Cummins
4 Michael Dunlop
5 James Hillier
6 Davey Todd
7 Michael Rutter
8 Jamie Coward
9 Brian McCormack
10 Dominic Herbertson
11 Gary Johnson
12 Shaun Anderson
13 Derek Sheils
14 Michael Booth
15 Michael Sweeney
16 Horst Saiger
17 Mark Parrett
18 Joe Akroyd
19 David Jackson
20 Frank Gallagher
21 Julian Trummer
22 Marc Ironside
23 Jay Lawrence
24 Michael Russell
25 Dave Hewson
26 Tom Weeden
27 Richard Wilson
28 Mark Goodings
29 Lukas Maurer
30 Josh Daley
31 Adrian Harrison
32 Morgan Govignon
33 George Spence
34 Barry Furber

Words by Stevie Rial

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