Barber wins historic first TTXGP
History has been made at the 2009 Isle of Man TT with the inaugural TTXGP, a race for clean emission motorcycles.
The Team Mission Motors entry, ridden by Thomas Montano, led the 13-strong field away from the TT Grandstand at 10.45am, and as he quietly rode his way down to Bray Hill a new chapter in the history of the 102-year-old TT was started.
Team Agni rider Rob Barber, who had dominated both practice sessions, was again the class of the field, reaching Glen Helen with the lead on the road. One of the potential challengers for victory – the Team Motoczysz machine ridden by Mark Miller – was forced out by mechanical problems before reaching the first checkpoint.
Thomas Schoenfelder, on the Team XXL machine, moved into second at Glen Helen, but the locally-entered Team ManTTx Racing machine, with James McBride standing in for the injured Dan Kneen, moved up to an impressive second place at Ballaugh.
Unfortunately, McBride would retire at Glen Duff, before reaching Ramsey on the single lap TTXGP race.
Schoenfelder was trailing Barber by more than 90 seconds at Ramsey Hairpin, but he did have the honour of setting the fastest speed ever recorded by an electric-powered bike at the Sulby speed trap – 106.5mph.
Barber maintained his lead over the Mountain section to take the chequered flag with a lap time of 25mins 53.5secs, an average speed of 87.434mph.
Schoenfelder held onto second place, more than three minutes down, with Mark Buckley on the Team Brammo entry coming home third.
As the Pro Class top three celebrated, the battle for Open Class honours continued on the TT course, and there was drama as the leading Team Barefoot Motors Racing machine of Chris Petty slowed as he approached the finish line. That allowed Chris Heath on the Team Electric Motorsport entry to overhaul Petty’s lead and take the class win by more than 35 seconds. Manxman John Crellin, riding the Team Tork machine, came home third.
Shortly after the podium ceremony started there was shock when it was announced Heath had been disqualified, promoting Petty to the win.
The disqualification was later overturned, restoring Heath's victory, moving Petty back to second and confirming Crellin in third.
The Pokerstars Senior TT is scheduled to start at 1pm, although clouds have now formed over the Grandstand and there are fears the threatened rain could arrive before the race gets under way.