Racers on the grid for opening Classic TT Races qualifying session
Riders are set for the opening session of the 2018 Classic TT Races presented by Bennetts which gets underway this evening from 5.20pm.
After a speed-controlled lap for newcomers at 5.20pm. the Lightweight and Superbike machines will be the first Classic machines to set off from Glencrutchery Road at approximately 5.35pm which will see the return of Dean Harrison on the Silicone Engineering Kawasaki. All eyes will also be on the new Team Classic Suzuki pairing of Philip Crowe and Danny Webb on the RG500.
Other TT riders due to go out in Superbike session include Michael Rutter on the Team Winfield Yamaha that he rode to second place last year and James Hillier who will again be on the Oxford Products/ Louigi Moto Ducati while Conor Cummins again goes on the Padgetts Motorcycles Yamaha.
Team York Suzuki will fancy their chances with an all Johnson pairing of Gary and Dave while Jamie Coward is another potential podium contender on the Kraus Racing Kawasaki and Josh Brookes will be hoping for better fortunes on the Wiz Norton racing machine after retiring from last year’s race.
A strong Lightweight class includes Lee Johnson on the Padgetts RS 250 Honda while Ian Lougher returns on the Laylaw Racing Yamaha and Dean Harrison will make his two stroke debut as Lougher’s teammate.
Other contenders include Adam McLean on a Binch Racing TZ250 Yamaha, Michael Rutter who returns on the Red Fox Grinta Ducati on which he lapped at over 117mph last year while Australian Dave Johnson is another making his Lightweight Classic TT debut on a John Chapman Racing Honda.
The Senior and Junior Classic machines are due away at 7.10pm and all eyes will be on the return of John McGuinness to the Mountain Course on the Team Winfield Paton. Ian Lougher, who won the corresponding race in 2014, will undoubtedly be a challenger on the John Chapman Racing MV Agusta. Other contenders include Lee Johnston on the Davies Motorsport Honda, last year’s runner up Jamie Cowton on the Ted Woof/ Craven Manx Norton and Michael Rutter who rides a Ripley Land Racing Matchless.
Rutter will also go out in the concurrent Junior session will start as favourite for Monday’s race on the Ripley Land Racing Honda that he won last year’s race on.
The Davies Motorsport trio of Alan Oversby (#2), Dominic Herbertson (#8) and 2014 race winner Lee Johnston (#13) are all race contenders as is Jamie Coward (#3) returns on board the Ted Woof/Craven Honda that he took to third place twelve months ago.
Opening Qualifying session times:
17.20-17.35: Classic TT Newcomers Speed controlled lap
17.35-18.30: CTT Lightweight and Superbike
18.35-19.30: CTT Junior and Senior
19.35-20.00: All newcomers (untimed) accompanied by selected experienced riders
Roads reopen no later than 21.00