600 production and Senior Race
Friday of race week is always a busy day at the TT as most riders will be riding in 2 races, the 600 production race in the morning and the Senior race in the afternoon. This year, that meant 3 laps in the morning and 4 laps in the afternoon.
We always felt confident of getting a replica in the production race. Dave had gone well in the Junior race although he was then on his production bike, so we all knew the times he had done just a few days before and we had an idea as to the likely times of the front runners and we were feeling confident.
We were off at number 46 with the weather holding up to be a nice sunny day. The lead was a real battle between McGuinness on the R6, Anstey on the GSXR 600 and Farquhar on the ZX6r. There really was nothing in it between those three, with the lead changing between them all the time. Dave was running well, with some 113 mph laps, we had an excellent pit stop with just the right amount of fuel going in for the one last lap and we got him out 12 seconds faster than the guy he came in with.
The race finished with Farquhar winning from Anstey by only 2.5 seconds, with McGuinness in 3rd. We were down in 38th place, but we did get a bronze replica.
Then it was a short break before the senior race. We had taken the Thursday rest day to play about with the suspension AGAIN on the big F1 bike. Dave was convinced the suspension on his K3 was better than the F1 bike, so we swapped the whole front end of the K3 bike into the F1 bike, plus the shock and the standard linkage. Dave was confident of a good result.
F1 bike in senior trim with the K3 suspension
off for the senior race
The race started with the expected favourite, McGuinness off to a flyer on the R1. Dave had an excellent first lap so we decided the suspension changes must be working. However the front runners started having problems. Both McGuinness and Griffiths on the R1, pulled out with clutch problems, along with several other top riders who all seemed to be having mechanical difficulties. Pit stop time and we had another excellent stop, but the bike would not start on the button for the restart. So it was a quick push down pit lane until it fired up. Eventually it fired and dave rocketed off down Bray Hill with the front wheel in the air. We were a bit concerned about the staring problem as the bike had always been so reliable. Anyway another flying lap and dave was onto his last lap. Due to a number of front runners having problems and dave riding well, we were lying somewhere inside the top 20, so we were on for a good finish, however, coming into Ramsey, on the last lap, with only 13 miles to go out of the 150 mile race, the bike died and lost all its power. Dave parked it against the side of the road and thought about what could have been a top 20 placing and another replica. It turned out to be the battery, which had taken such a hammering, it just died, and that meant there was not enough power to run the fuel injection on the bike. Lougher had the same problem on his CBR1000. Anyway, we were disappointed, but that’s racing at the TT.
Dave collecting his replica for the 600 proddie race
We ended this year on a slight downer, but we were back safely, with 2 replicas and some fastest ever laps in the bag for Dave, so not too bad really. They are changing the rules for next years TT races, and at the moment we don’t know if we will be back racing next year as Dave has been talking about possibly retiring. I am sure as the time gets nearer, he will get the bug again and we will be there for next year, but we will wait and see. The F1 GSXR 1000 is now up for sale, with its 178 hp and 98lbft at the wheel, with all the kit and bells and whistles plus spare OZ wheels included, if anyone is interested, send me a pm and I will send the full spec of this awesome bike.
A big thanks to all out sponsors, especially Galfer for supplying the excellent brakes, plus the crew at GDC for the continued support and especially the guys at Lishman Sidwell Campbell and Price for stepping in at the last minute with some sponsorship after we lost our previous sponsor.