TT 2024: RST Superbike Race Analysis

TT 2024: RST Superbike Race Analysis
Drama, drama, drama and more drama, is one way to sum up today’s RST Superbike race, won by Monster Energy FHO Racing BMW’s Peter Hickman.

At the end of lap one, Milwaukee BMW’s Davey Todd held a slender lead before Michael Dunlop on lap two, took command.

As lap two ended, Dunlop astride the MasterMac Hawk Racing Honda, moved nine seconds to the good out front, setting a new SBK lap record of 135.543 mph.

For the next two laps, Dunlop obtained total race control, stretching his P1 advantage to plus twenty-five seconds.

A cruel turn of luck would encounter ‘Maverick’ though as second, scheduled pit stops concluded.

Of all issues possible, a sidepod helmet obstacle be-struck him!

Having to stop towards Bray Hill, he took his helmet off, took his gloves off and after loosing chunks and chunks and time, set off again.

His problems, alongside those afflicting qualifying week pace setter Todd at the pits, meant Dean Harrison was now first going into the early stages of lap five.

Close behind, outright lap record holder Hickman, still riding with a bruised hand, was step by step getting into the swing of things and by Ramsey Hairpin usurped Harrison for first.

With one lap remaining, Hickman led Harrison by just over two seconds with Todd third, Dunlop now back in fourth.

Early timing sectors of lap six saw Hickman get the hammer down, opening an above average advantage.

As the front runners reached the Mountain, Todd re-took P2 from Harrison.

Out front, Hickman despite increasing pressure from Todd, kept cool, as he got closer to a 14th TT triumph.

Through Cronk ny Mona, Governors Dip, the ever-laidback Hickman did everything needed to cross the line, to make it 14 TT victories, going equal with the legendary Mike Hailwood.

Todd (new personal best lap speed 135.664 mph) securing his third TT rostrum finish, attained second, Harrison chalked up third whilst Dunlop fourth after dominating most of the race, had the ample consolation of besting his previous SBK lap record, lapping at 135.970 mph.

A close fight for fifth was won by James Hillier with John McGuinness MBE, Jamie Coward, setting on the sixth lap a new PB lap speed of 132.696 mph, sixth, seventh respectively.

Michael Browne, now the speediest Aprilia mounted TT competitor in history, Michael Rutter, Brian McCormack completed the top ten whilst positions eleventh to fifteenth were bagged by Jackson Racing’s Julian Trummer, Marcus ‘Spartacus’ Simpson, AJ Venter, James Chawke and Sam West.

A further eleven racers completed full race distance, Jonathan Goetschy, Matt Stevenson, Jamie Cringle, Rhys Hardisty, Eddy Ferre.

Timothee Monot, Michael Russell, Paul ‘Potchy’ Williams, Darryl Tweed, Pete Stacey Racing’s Tom Robinson and Jonathan Perry.

Before slipping off un-injured at Quarter Bridge, Amalric Blanc had the distinction of becoming France’s new fastest TT exponent, having topped the 127-mph lap barrier.

Josh Brookes race ended on lap one, via a broken chain whilst added notable early retirements included Conor Cummins, Rob Hodson and Phil Crowe.

Post race reaction:

Peter Hickman:

“I knew Davey had a problem at the pits but I had no idea Michael had a problem.

The first board I saw gave an indication, I was P2, one second away, which I wasn’t expecting at all, because I was P4 rest of the race, so was a nice surprise.”

Davey Todd:

“Yeah it’s unfortunate, we had an issue there, I don’t know what went wrong, the guys will research into it.

But for some reason the bike wouldn’t start, lost a whole load of time in that second pit-stop, dropped us out of second, into third or fourth place or whatever and fought back up to P2 on the last lap, over the moon with my lap time and the bike and the team, everything is going well, we just need a bit of luck.

In all honesty, we was the second fastest out there today, Michael had the edge on us for them first laps before either of us had problems, so P2 was were we were at but we’ve got some steps to make and we can build, it’s a good start to the week with two P2’s, it’s good.”

Dean Harrison:

“I don’t know what to say, my plan was just to go hard from the start and see where we end up.

So, happy to be on the podium again, podiums are great, the potential with the new Fireblade is massive, we’ll just keep trying to make it better and better.”

Photo credit: Mark Corlett

Words by Stevie Rial #dontletfearcontrolyou
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