IoM TT 2017: A look ahead to Superbike Sunday

Rachael Clegg
By Rachael Clegg
CleggRachael Creator of crazy art-nude historic motorsport books and calendars, journalist and artist.
Michael Dunlop GSXR Superbike TT

Today teams are gearing up for the first race of the Isle of Man TT, the Superbike race. 

Traditionally held on the Saturday, the race has been postponed to allow for more practice laps.

In yesterday's qualifying session, it was Michael Dunlop who led the way with a lap of 131.062 mph aboard his Bennetts Suzuki. Peter Hickman was second fastest with a lap of 130.629 and Ian Hutchinson was third fastest with a best lap of 130.327. 

1 6 Michael Dunlop Suzuki 17:16.361 131.062
2 10 Peter Hickman BMW 17:19.799 130.629
3 4 Ian Hutchinson BMW 17:22.209 130.327
4 14 Dan Kneen BMW 17:22.232 130.324
5 11 Michael Rutter BMW 17:24.545 130.036
6 2 Bruce Anstey Honda 17:25.531 129.913
7 9 Dean Harrison Kawasaki 17:31.408 129.187
8 3 James Hillier Kawasaki 17:31.469 129.179
9 13 Lee Johnston BMW 17:33.782 128.896
10 18 Martin Jessopp BMW 17:42.090 127.887

 

Peter Hickman 2017 Isle of Man
Despite topping the timesheets, Michael Dunlop’s Bennetts Suzuki team are still working on the GSX-R1000’s stability round the demanding Mountain Course. Steve Hicken, who prepares the machine with father Stuart, said: “The timesheets are proving that we’re doing well so we are pretty happy but we do have to improve the chassis.”

“We've had to get the balance right with the throttle and engine and then there’s the challenge of keeping this consistent for six laps. Every manufacturer sets a bike up differently so you have to adjust and adapt the bike to suit.”

For Tyco, the issue is tyres. BSB rider and mechanic Christian Iddon said: “It’s tyres for us. Last year Hutchy was on Metzelers and now he’s on Dunlop and he’s getting used to that. The profile is different on the Dunlop tyre and the tyre dictates how you set up the machine so we need to look at that.”

Both Tyco and Bennetts Suzuki will no doubt be busy ahead of today’s race, which is scheduled to start at 2pm. 
 
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